Manager Manuel Pellegrini praised Manchester City's resilience after they responded to a tough week and Vincent Kompany's red card to beat Hull 2-0 and keep the pressure on Chelsea.
City exited the Champions League and FA Cup last week and had Kompany sent off for fouling Nikica Jelavic inside 10 minutes of their Premier League return.
But City won to go second - six points off Chelsea with two games in hand.
"It was a very good response. It was a very difficult week," Pellegrini said.
"And then we had to start this game playing with one player less after 10 minutes. It was more difficult to play with 10 players but I trust the team, I trust the players and I think we did really well with the ball."
City, who lost to Wigan Athletic in the FA Cup last Sunday and Barcelona in midweek, started slowly at the KC Stadium and their hopes of earning maximum points were dealt a huge blow when Kompany saw red.
Pellegrini thought Jelavic ought to have been penalised for a foul on Kompany before outmuscling the City captain and being grappled to the ground, but was delighted with how his side overcame the numerical disadvantage.
"I thought before it was clear foul by Jelavic - before Vincent did his foul," Pellegrini added. "But the referee didn't see it, he saw the foul of Kompany and he sent him off.
"It was not the best way to start our return to the Premier League. It was a clear foul by Jelavic but we won the game playing very well.
"I trust my players and the team. We kept the ball very well today - and without the ball you cannot make damage. We scored an important goal and had three clear chances to score another goal. I don't remember any clear chances for Hull."