Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola questioned the key decisions that went against his side in the 2-0 loss to Crystal Palace at home on Saturday but refused to blame the referee for defeat in his 200th Premier League match in charge.
City were trailing 1-0 after Wilfried Zaha had struck early when centre back Aymeric Laporte was sent off just before halftime for hauling down the Palace winger, who was adjudged to have been clear on goal.
“This afternoon Jonny Evans (in Leicester City’s game against Arsenal) with the same action got a yellow card. It is interpretation from the referee,” said Guardiola.
“Playing 11 against 11 or 11 against 10 it is different but the referee took that decision. We created more than them with 10 against 11. We created enough with those circumstances.”
City found their groove in the second half but were unable to break down a stubborn Palace defence. They came the closest at the hour mark when Gabriel Jesus turned in a delightful dink from Phil Foden but the goal was ruled out for offside.
“After the sending off it was more difficult. We did a good second half for 25 minutes. The goal again — they disallowed it for nothing and at the end it was more difficult,” added Guardiola.
“I imagine the line said offside but we didn’t lose because of that. Against Brighton the line said their goal was offside but that stood…”
Palace’s Conor Gallagher added to Zaha’s first-half effort with a smart finish in the 88th minute to give the London club only their second win of the season.
It was City’s second defeat this week, following their League Cup exit against West Ham United. They remain third in the league standings with 20 points — five behind leaders Chelsea — from 10 games.