Live updates

Regrets over Man City exit announcement - Pellegrini

Manuel Pellegrini regrets the timing of his announcement Credit: PA

Departing Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini admits he has regrets over his decision to announce mid-season he was leaving.

The Chilean is in the final few days of his reign at the Etihad Stadium after the club revealed in February he would be replaced by Pep Guardiola.

Pellegrini decided to go public with the revelation he was to leave just minutes before City officially confirmed a new man would take over in the summer but in hindsight he accepts it had a detrimental effect on his players, as he told the Guardian.

At the time City were second, just three points behind Leicester, but they immediately lost three matches in a row in all competitions and eventually finished fourth, 15 adrift of the champions.

After Guardiola said he was coming to England it was my decision (to go public) because all the media was talking about Guardiola here, Guardiola in Arsenal, Guardiola in Manchester United. It was not fair for all managers - when everyone knew he was coming here.

If I ask if I would do that again... I have some doubts. Yes. I am very self-critical about what I do. Always. I don't want to use (this) as an excuse but it was so difficult to work after that - not for me, for the players.

It's impossible to know if it was the right decision but when you see the consequence of losing immediately three games in a row, when you are winning the last five or something....

The most difficult thing in a group is when you break something. Something was broken in that moment.

– Manuel Pellegrini

No talks with Pep over Manchester City job - Pellegrini

Manuel Pellegrini won't speak with Pep Guardiola over Man City job Credit: PA

Manuel Pellegrini has revealed he will not speak to his successor, Pep Guardiola, about the challenges facing the Spaniard next season following his move from Bayern Munich to Manchester City.

The current incumbent leaves the Etihad Stadium club this summer after three years in charge and has all but secured Champions League football for the team next term, with Manchester United needing to win by 19 goals in their final game to leapfrog their rivals.

Pellegrini suggested that Guardiola had enough contacts at the club not to need any further input, while also hinting that he could remain in the Premier League for his next job.

I don't think that we need to speak. He knows perfectly what is this club, he has friends inside here. He is a very important manager in Europe, so I am sure he will have all the information.

This team in the last five seasons always plays Champions League. So I think he will receive a club he deserves, and I am sure that this club will continue improving in the future.

I will now starting thinking about the future, I don't want to decide just in one week. I will see different options. I am fortunate to work in five countries, but the Premier League is the most important in the world.

The stadiums are full capacity, a party every game, fans uniting and singing. The atmosphere. It is important for managers to have this experience.

– Manuel Pellegrini


Pellegrini 'forced' to field under-strength Man City side at Chelsea

Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini claimed his side were "forced" to field such an under-strength team at Stamford Bridge in the FA Cup on Sunday (City lost 5-1), given the fact they travel to play Dynamo Kiev in the Champions League on Wednesday and are troubled by injury.

"We are forced to do it," he said. "I think that if we play on Saturday it's better for us because we have to play for England in the Champions League."

Pellegrini hits out at Real Madrid over Benitez sacking

Manuel Pellegrini is not surprised by the latest changes at former club Real Madrid but says he feels sorry for Rafa Benitez.

Spanish giants Real, notorious for their high coaching turnover, axed Benitez after just seven months in charge and installed Zinedine Zidane as his replacement.

Pellegrini managed at Real Madrid. Credit: PA

The 62-year-old said of Real: "At least I finished the year! But I knew from the beginning I was not to continue for the next year. There were some important differences with the president.

"I am sorry about Rafa Benitez because I think he is a manager that deserves respect but it is not strange what has happened at Real Madrid in the last five or six years.

"Yes, (it is) absolutely different (at City). It is another way to think about the role of the manager. A lot of things are different.

"That is why one team is changing manager every year, and at this team it is not the policy of the owners to change immediately when you don't win a title. Different projects for each club."

"Always to manage a big team is very difficult, Real Madrid is a very difficult team. But it is more difficult in the way they manage the club than the position of the manager."

Title battle begins in February insists Man City boss

Manuel Pellegrini wants his Manchester City team to be in prime position to launch their title charge from February.

City are third in the Barclays Premier League at Christmas, six points behind leaders Leicester and four adrift of second-placed Arsenal.

Pellegrini insists the race hots up in February. Credit: PA

The Chilean said: "I think it's very important to be involved, as we are now, at the end of January. If you can be leaders before then that is better, but I think you need to be there on the last day of January. Then, in the last three months, you can win the title."

City travel to Leicester on Tuesday for another big clash but must first negotiate Sunderland at the Etihad Stadium on Boxing Day.

Pellegrini said: "We need to focus game by game. The next game is Sunderland and we must try to beat them here. That's never an easy game.

"Only after that do we think about Leicester. It's very important to win these two games to finish off the first round (of fixtures).

"We lost important points against Arsenal. I said before the game that it was a game of six points but it was not a decisive game. I repeat that you never win the title in December."


Pellegrini: Manchester City season "thrown into the garbage"

Pellegrini has bemoaned Manchester City's form since the start of 2015. Credit: PA

Manchester City have thrown their Premier League title defence "into the garbage", according to boss Manuel Pellegrini.

City head into Sunday's Manchester derby fourth in the table, nine points off leaders Chelsea, who have a game in hand.

The defending champions were level with José Mourinho's side at the start of 2015, but have since lost to Arsenal, Liverpool, Burnley and Crystal Palace in the league, as well as being eliminated from the FA Cup and the Champions League.

It has not been a good season. It was not so bad until the end of 2014, when we were top of the table and also had the FA Cup and Champions League.

But in the last three months we have thrown it into the garbage.

I think always for the fans it is important to finish as near to the top of the table as you can and that's what we must do.

– Manuel Pellegrini

Pellegrini urges City to 'never give up' in Chelsea chase

Man City manager Manuel Pellegrini has urged his side to pick themselves up from their Champions League misery and finish the season strongly.

Pellegrini doesn't believed the title is sewn up just yet. Credit: PA

City's season is now in danger of fizzling out after Barcelona ended their hopes of progressing in Europe with a formidable display at the Nou Camp.

Coming four days after a shock loss to Burnley left their Premier League title defence in tatters, City look set to end the season empty-handed and reflecting on under-achievement.

But Pellegrini insists the campaign is not yet over, and wants a strong response against West Brom on Saturday.

The Chilean, who is looking increasingly vulnerable in his position, said:

We must never give up. We are six points behind Chelsea, so it is difficult, but we still have nine games left. We must focus our minds.

It is a disappointment not to go through but we have just played the best team in the world.

– Man City manager Manuel Pellegrini
Load more updates