Pep Guardiola: Manchester City were 'sloppy' during West Ham rout
Raheem Sterling scores hat-trick as Premier League champions City ease to victory at London Stadium
Last Updated: 10/08/19 10:34pm
Pep Guardiola was delighted with Manchester City's 5-0 win over West Ham in their Premier League opener - but not the performance.
Gabriel Jesus' opener, followed by Raheem Sterling's second-half hat-trick and a penalty from Sergio Aguero, secured an emphatic win for the defending champions at the London Stadium.
- West Ham 0-5 Man City
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But while Guardiola was happy in the end, he was unconvinced by what he saw from his team in the first half despite going in 1-0 ahead at the interval.
"In terms of the result, yes," he replied when asked if he was happy.
"I cannot deny I am delighted for the first game. After winning the last 14 games of last season, that's 15 now. It is good."
And the performance? "No," he added.
"In the first half we were sloppy with our passes, we were not precise. But that's normal. The first game, away, 12.30 kick-off, hot. It's normal.
"In the second half, from the beginning we were better, more calm, more passes. After 3-0, the game was over."
City's third goal appeared to have come earlier than it did only for Jesus to have a goal ruled out following a VAR check because Sterling was adjudged to have been marginally offside.
"We had to be strong because at 3-0 we can say the game is almost over," Guardiola explained.
"But then it is 0-2 and Ederson is having to make amazing saves to stop it being 1-2. In this league, anything can happen. So you have to be 100 per cent ready, always be focused.
"My only wish is that VAR does not make mistakes. Please. If it is offside, it is offside. If it is hand, it is hand. Rules and rules. No problem. That is OK. My only concern is when VAR makes mistakes. But I think this will be more fair."
As for his team, he is confident that even after a result like this they can improve.
"We have to," he said.
Pellegrini: City used tactical fouls
West Ham manager Manuel Pellegrini said his side were hampered by "tactical fouling" from Manchester City.
"Every time we tried to arrive in their box they committed fouls, 13 to our five. I think we were a little bit innocent.
"We must be intelligent to know when to use tactical fouling. If you review the game today, the reason we didn't create too many chances is because all of our offensive ways of attacking resulted in a foul."
Pellegrini also said the score didn't reflect "the difference between the two teams".
"Last season we lost here 4-0 against Manchester City and they could have scored more goals. In this game, especially the first 45 minutes, I think that we played very well.
"We had good possession. Maybe we needed to arrive more in their box but it was a really tight game. I thought that we were a little bit unlucky for the first goal.
"We had one or two chances to make it 2-1 and then in the last minutes they scored three goals but I don't think the score reflected the difference between the two sides."
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