Wednesday 21 August 2019

Manuel Pellegrini unfazed by talk linking Pep Guardiola with Manchester City job

Manuel Pellegrini, pictured right, is used to speculation linking Pep Guardiola, left, with his job
Manuel Pellegrini, pictured right, is used to speculation linking Pep Guardiola, left, with his job

Manuel Pellegrini has shrugged off the latest round of speculation linking Pep Guardiola with his job at Manchester City.

The City manager says he has learned to live with suggestions from outside the club that he is only keeping the seat warm for Bayern Munich's much sought-after former Barcelona boss.

Reports in Spain on Friday claimed City had agreed a deal in principle with the Catalan and speculation increased when Guardiola later pulled out of a planned press conference in Munich citing personal reasons.

For Pellegrini, such talk is nothing new. Rumours of a City move for Guardiola have recurred throughout his tenure at the Etihad Stadium, and even predate his arrival in 2013.

He accepts he can do little about it with the two former Barca executives now at City, Ferran Soriano and Txiki Begiristain, always lending substance to the conjecture by their mere presence at the club.

Pellegrini said: "It is a rumour that we have had for the last two and a half seasons here. There is not a problem about that.

"I don't analyse different rumours. Everyone can make rumours, write or talk about different rumours.

"It's not a lack of respect about me - this is the profession. It is that way. In every big team - Real Madrid, Barcelona, Chelsea, Manchester United - it is the same thing. You must have trust in your work - that's very important."

Pellegrini, 62, signed a one-year extension to a contract that was due to expire at the end of the season during the summer.

That was never likely to put an end to speculation linking Guardiola, who is also out of contract next summer, with City but Pellegrini is not distracted from his job.

The Chilean said: "The only confidence I have is about my work. I think that is the way you must try to demonstrate the kind of manager you are.

"I never have any problem about my work, so it doesn't matter what they say. If (that was) not (the case), it's impossible to work in this club - and not just in this club, but every big team."

Pellegrini's priority is to get City back to winning ways after a 4-1 thrashing by Liverpool in the Barclays Premier League last weekend and a midweek loss to Juventus in the Champions League.

City have slipped to third in the table, but Pellegrini is confident of getting his title favourites back on track.

He said: "It is important to be a solid, consistent team and to recover our normal style of play and that will give us the points we need to win it."

PA Media

The Left Wing: The 'hell' of World Cup training camp, Ireland's half-back dilemma and All Blacks uncertainty

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport