Málaga’s Manuel Pellegrini: I’ve not agreed to join Man City

Málaga manager Manuel Pellegrini insists he has not agreed to join Manchester City in the summer

roberto mancini
Roberto Mancini's side lost to Wigan in the FA Cup final Photo: Back Page Images

Manuel Pellegrini has denied speculation that he is going to replace Roberto Mancini at Manchester City.

The Citizens manager is coming under increasing pressure after the former Premier League champions suffered a shock 1-0 loss to Wigan Athletic in the FA Cup final on Saturday.

Pellegrini, who has previously coached Real Madrid and Villarreal, is reported to be the frontrunner to succeed the Inter head coach after leading Málaga to the Champions League last eight this term.

But the 59-year-old has played down the speculation, insisting he hasn’t spoken to any clubs but will clarify his future “in the next few days”.

“Today, I deny I am going to be the new manager of Manchester City,” Pellegrini told Málaga’s website.

“I have not signed an agreement with anyone, not with Manchester City, not with Roma, not with Napoli, not with PSG, not with any of the clubs who have been mentioned.

“Every year I have had the possibility of major teams making an offer to me and that is an honour. I had a date agreed with Málaga not to talk to anyone and I have no agreement with anyone.

“In the next few days I hope to clarify a bit what the future will be here in the club.”

Manuel Pellegrini fact-file

• The former centre-back began his coaching career in 1988 with his sole club as a player, Universidad de Chile, before spending the next 16 years working with sides in Chile, Ecuador and Argentina.

• He took over at Villarreal in 2004, guiding them to third place in the Liga in his debut season and securing a place in
the Champions League for the first time. His side also reached the quarter-finals of the Uefa Cup.

• The following campaign, Villarreal defied all expectations by reaching the Champions League semi-finals, where they bowed out 1-0 on aggregate to Arsenal. He guided the club to second place in the 2007-08 Liga, a club record, and the Champions League quarter-finals the following season, again being knocked out by Arsenal.

• He signed a two-year contract with Real Madrid on 2 June 2009, the club winning a then record 96 points in the Liga but still finishing second behind Barcelona, prompting Pellegrini’s dismissal in May 2010

• That November he succeeded Jesualdo Ferreira as coach of Málaga and in the following campaign oversaw a fourth-placed league finish, the club’s best ever, subsequently negotiating Champions League qualifying to reach the group stage for the first time before crashing out in the last eight.

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