Kamis, 29 November 2012

Nastasic enjoying life at City

Matija Nastasic: Impressed in win over Wigan

The 19-year-old, who joined City from Serie A side Fiorentina this summer, impressed in the 2-0 Premier League win over Wigan at the DW Stadium on Wednesday night.

Mario Balotelli, who made his first start in six matches, gave City the lead in the 69th minute before substitute James Milner hit a stunning second three minutes later to seal the win.

While Balotelli was busy writing headlines with his first Premier League goal of the season, Nastasic continued to quietly forge a solid defensive partnership with Vincent Kompany at the other end of the pitch, even though Joleon Lescott was available for selection after returning from injury.

The composed teenager has been in good form and has become a key part of a City defence that has kept five clean sheets in their last six league games.

However, while the Serbian says he is enjoying the English game, he is still learning alongside one of the best defenders in the business in the form of Kom pany.

"It's going very well. I'm very happy. The road is the right one and I think I'm going the right way," Nastasic said.

"I've been here for the last two or three months and, yes, I am playing with Vinnie (Kompany) but the other guys are good - Joleon, Kolo (Toure) - and they can also play well but I'm feeling good.

"We (Vincent and I) talk every day on the pitch and on the training ground, and it makes me happy to play alongside such an excellent captain and in such a good team.

"I do like the way the English game is because it is quite quick. In Italy it is a little bit slower but I do like it and I prefer to pay in a quick game.

"Whatever I am learning, I am learning along with Vinnie."

City boss Mancini was satisfied with Wednesday night's result in what was an evenly fought match, although it was not all good news for the Italian as Milner picked up a hamstring injury.

Milner spent just 21 minutes on the field before b eing forced off and will be assessed in the coming days.

"Against Wigan is is always a difficult game like last year but in the end we deserved to win," Mancini said.

"Maybe we didn't play like we did against Chelsea but we played good football.

"James scored a good goal and played very well. We are disappointed with his hamstring but hope he recovers quickly."

It was a game of contrasting fortunes for Wigan boss Roberto Martinez, who saw his side come away empty-handed despite creating clear-cut chances.

Arouna Kone wasted their best chance when he put a header wide before City broke and took the lead when Balotelli snaffled a rebound.

"I thought we were really strong and well-organised, especially in the first half, not allowing Man City to find any rhythm," Martinez said.

"We then found ourselves in probably the best situations in the game to take the lead but couldn't find that final ball to take advantage and when you're playing well in those periods you need to score the first goal.

"Their first goal was a real setback and then moments later we conceded a goal which is an outstanding strike from outside the box, but in terms of the work ethic and the way in which we stopped the opposition for long periods, I was very pleased.

"Sometimes when you perform well against these sides and end up on the losing side it can be too easy to accept the outcome, but the dressing room is very disappointed to have not taken a result and we need to learn now how to take advantage of those situations before the opposition does."

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