After scoring a hat-trick against Aston Villa last Saturday Kelechi Iheanacho revealed the secret of his strength, saying it is a result of hard work, team work and coach work.
The 19 years old who is now the latest chant in the City fans’ song book said “I couldn’t believe that,” he told reporters after the match. “It was a great feeling for me, so I’m happy, being among them and playing with them.
“I’m very happy having them as my team-mates, they help me in training and in games, they help me to keep going, so I’m happy.”
“I need to build my confidence to play in the team, it’s what I need to work on, work hard and get my confidence to play.
“That’s what I’m working on now, to build confidence. There’s nothing to fear, it’s professional football, so I need to build my confidence to play.”
Pellegrini was full of praise for Iheanacho after the game, having previously urged the youngster to take his chances when they are presented, and it transpires he had a similar message before Saturday’s game.
“He told me to work hard every game, that it’s my opportunity to be in the team that I should work hard, so I went in to try my best and work hard.”
Iheanacho himself has revealed in the past that his first preference when leaving Nigeria was for Porto, but after once again admitting that – in hushed tones – he is more convinced than ever that he made the right choice in moving to City.
“I’m happy being at City, playing at City at the moment. I wanted to go to FC Porto before but my father said that coming here we would have a great future.
“It was the right decision, I’m happy.”
The Nigerian is expected to be named in City’s Champions League squad for the knock-out stages when it is submitted to Uefa on Tuesday, and although he insists that is not something he has discussed with his manager, he says he is hoping to succeed in that and much more besides