Lescott: Madrid Omission Hurt

Robert Pollard

Joleon Lescott has spoken about his disappointment at being left out of the City side to face Real Madrid last week in the opening Champions League match of the season. The defender, who was outstanding last season as the club picked up their first league title in 44 years, returned to the City side for the league match against Arsenal on Sunday, but his omission from the Madrid game clearly hurts.

Obviously it hurt but the manager picked the team and I wasn’t in it. It’s a great stadium, a great occasion for the club and you want to pit yourself against the world’s best, like Cristiano Ronaldo. But I just have to work hard. It’s happened before over the last couple of seasons. I’ve played, been left out. It’s happened before during my career and I’m ready for the fight. The gaffer made it clear that everyone’s got a part to play this season, and it was the same last year. It worked for us last year and we need to stay focused on the job, and that’s to go into every game to win.

Lescott has two seasons left on his City contract and he’s keen for more.

I’ve got this season and one more. I’d love to extend it and finish my career here. Going knocking on doors isn’t my style. I don’t think my mum would be happy if I did that. I just continue to be professional. I know where I’ve come from. A few years ago I was playing away at Plymouth on Tuesday nights. Now Tuesday evenings mean Champions League.

Lescott is now a key player for England but the arrival of Matija Nastasic appears to have placed his position in the city side in to some doubt. After the season he had last year, it seemed harsh that he was dropped for such a huge occasion in The Berbabeu but, in Mancini’s defence, Nastasic had an excellent debut. Whether or not the Italian sees the 30-year-old Lescott as a player he wants to replace in the long-term is yet to be seen but it’s clear that Lescott sees his future at City.

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