Manuel Pellegrini insists Real Madrid were “very lucky” to beat Manchester City and set up a Champions League final clash with fierce rivals Atletico Madrid.
Gareth Bale’s deflected effort off City midfielder Fernando secured a 1-0 victory for Los Blancos, who had plenty of chances to extend their lead.
But despite a somewhat timid performance from his side, Pellegrini remains adamant City were at least on a par with Real.
“We didn’t deserve to lose this game,” said the Chilean, whose side had four shots on goal to Real’s 15. “Real were very lucky with the deflection that gave them the goal.
“None of the teams deserved to win and it should have gone to penalties. We didn’t see Real Madrid better than us, we were not creative enough to do damage.
“I think Real Madrid’s defence was good but none of these two teams was able to overcome the defence of the other one, neither in Manchester nor Madrid.”
The result means Pellegrini now has only two more fixtures in charge of the club, as he will be replaced by Pep Guardiola in the summer.
City cannot afford to ease off for the remainder of the season, however, with a top-four place in the Premier League yet to be secured.
“It was very important for me to try to reach the final but we couldn’t. We did what we could and now we must think about the future,” Pellegrini added.
City were dealt a blow after just eight minutes when captain Vincent Kompany had to be replaced after suffering yet another injury.
But Pellegrini refused to blame the absence of his skipper for the defeat.
“Of course, it’s not a good way to start a semi-final to lose your captain but I don’t think we had any problem defending,” he said.
“What we didn’t have was the creative players.”