Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini believes his side’s second-half performance against Arsenal showed they are still worthy title contenders this season.
City were beaten 2-1 at the Emirates on Monday after Theo Walcott and Olivier Giroud netted first-half goals in London.
Yaya Toure pulled a goal back after the interval but second-placed Arsenal managed to hold on to their advantage, which sees then move four points clear of City in the Premier League table heading into Christmas.
However, Pellegrini was delighted with the way City responded after a lacklustre first 45 minutes.
“I am thinking about the future not the past,” the Chilean said. “We have 63 points more to win. I think the way we played in the second half we are going to be an important team in fighting for the title.
“In the second half we took more risks, we created a lot of chances, we had more possession, we had lots of shots but in a match this important you can’t make mistakes.
“We played better than Arsenal but for the second goal we made a mistake and that was decisive. I am very proud of the attitude of the team though. We kept fighting until the end and never gave up.”
Argentina international Sergio Aguero made his return to the City line-up after almost a month out and Pellegrini is hoping he can return to full match fitness in the coming weeks.
“I think that it was important for Sergio to return to the team,” he said.
“Maybe he needs a few more matches to return to his form but it was important for the team that he played tonight.”