Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini was bang out of order and completely inaccurate with his evaluation on Chelsea being a “small team”. Whilst meant as an insult to Chelsea's famous 'parking the bus tactics', the barbed comment did nothing more than solidify the assumption City have spent an awful lot for awfully little.
In the aftermath of Sunday's 1-1 draw with Chelsea, Pellegrini stated: "It was very similar to the Stoke team, with a big team playing against a small team with very good players, trying to defend, trying to keep the score [nil-nil]. They had nine players in front of their box. I said last week that it will be very difficult for us to defend the title because every team will play the way Chelsea did. I repeat that I think they had no intention to win the game. They came just to draw and they scored on the counterattack against 10 players.”
In some sense I can sympathise with Pellegrini's statements, trying to play against a side intent on defending first is indeed the most frustrating thing in the world - though surely the millions upon millions City have spent should have been able to overcome the challenge - especially as they were at home.
Nonetheless, with Chelsea also being title contenders with a team equally as expensive as City's, I suppose my sympathy can be extended.
Where my sympathy ends is Pellegrini's derogatory dig in comparing Chelsea with Stoke. Has he forgotten how Stoke embarrassed City at home? Regardless of how Stoke achieved their victory, they achieved a victory away against the best and the most expensively assembled team in the history of the Premier League.
Pellegrini should feel embarrassed his 'big club' couldn't defeat a 'small team' like Stoke at home; that he couldn't defeat a 'small team' like Chelsea; that prior to yesterday's win against Sheffield Wednesday, City hadn't won in four - one of which included Bayern's complete domination against City.
Indeed, Bayern had a total of 21 shots and 57% possession; whereas City had a meagre 7 shots and 43% share of possession as they lost 1-0. Eerily, City had 16 shots and 58% of possession to Chelsea's 6 shots and 42% of possession, yet could only draw 1-1.
It seems like if Chelsea are a small club to City, City are a small club to Bayern. Let's not forget Chelsea beat Bayern to win the Champions League a few years ago, whereas City just got out the group stage for the first time in their history.
Pellegrini, it's good to let out anger from time to time, but let's keep things in perspective.