Champions League on Tuesday.
Despite many expecting the club to record their first European win of the season, the City defender wanted to draw on the positives of the disappointing result.
City looked to be destined for the Champions League exit door after being 2-0 down in just 17 minutes, but they nearly hit back to nab all 3 points in the Group D encounter.
The Argentinian international was keen to point out that this illustrated the belief and determination within the side, which will be encouraging for his side going forward.
“One of the positive points was that the team showed a very good spirit. It is not easy,” Zabaleta told Sky Sports.
“At the start of the game we conceded two goals and the team did well. We showed spirit, tried to get back.”
The match was shrouded in controversy with Sergio Aguero denied a late winner and Mario Balotelli having his penalty claim dismissed with the last kick of the game.
However, the 27-year-old tried to provide some perspective with heated incidents occurring at the full time whistle as several of the City players surrounded the referee.
“It was really important for us to get three points and we went to the referee to see why.
“Everybody was angry. Roberto asked the referee why he didn’t give the penalty or why there was a flag after the goal.”
Roberto Mancini’s men will be looking to bounce back from their midweek disappointment against Ajax when they welcome Tottenham Hotspur to the Etihad on Sunday.