West Ham United manager Manuel Pellegrini accused Manchester City of committing tactical fouls during their 5-0 defeat.
In similar fashion to last season’s 4-0 hammering at Liverpool, Pellegrini and West Ham began their Premier League campaign with a thrashing.
This time around it came at hands of defending champions City, who stormed to a 5-0 victory in London following Raheem Sterling’s hat-trick, Sergio Aguero’s penalty, and Gabriel Jesus’ early strike.
Arguably, though, West Ham had got off to a stronger start than their opponents. But they could only make five attempts on goal, with three of them on target.
What really got Pellegrini fuming, however, was the fouls City committed as his players searched for a goal.
“Every time we tried to arrive in their box they committed fouls. We were innocent in that regard,” said Pellegrini, according to The Guardian.
“If you review the game, that is why we didn’t create too many chances in the first half. All our offensive moments of attacking ended in a foul. You can look at the statistics. They committed 13 fouls, we committed five. But that wasn’t the reason why we lost.”
Despite Pellegrini’s protests, referee Mike Dean only booked two City players in Kyle Walker and Sterling during the match.
Meanwhile, the Hammers boss believes there were positives to take from Saturday’s defeat despite the scoreline.
“I think for the first 45 minutes, we played really well,” Pellegrini told talkSPORT.
“Similar as Manchester City, they didn’t create chances, we had lots of possession of the ball.
“But we were vey unlucky in their first goal because it is so important against City to go one goal down because they had more possession.
“But we conceded that first goal which rebounded off Issa [Diop] and after that in the second half, we have some destructions in their second goal.”
Pellegrini and West Ham will now travel to Brighton next Saturday for their second Premier League match.