Next Game

Sporting KC v Man City

Thursday, 24 July 2014, 02:00

Friendly Match

Tynecastle Stadium

Last Game

Hearts 1 - 2 Man City

Friday, 18 July 2014, 19:30

Friendly Match

Pellegrini 'can take the strain'

Manuel Pellegrini feels no greater pressure now than when he first arrived at Man City and says winning the Premier League remains the aim.

Last Updated: 15/03/14 at 08:06 Post Comment

Manuel Pellegrini: Insists he can cope with expectations

Manuel Pellegrini: Insists he can cope with expectations

City's season has reached a crucial juncture after elimination from both the Champions League and FA Cup in the past week.

They did win the Capital One Cup earlier this month but defeats to Barcelona and Wigan in the other knock-out competitions have ended their quadruple bid and brought a scrutiny on Pellegrini not seen this season.

The Chilean must now rally his side to prevent a campaign that promised much ending in anti-climax.

The club's demanding hierarchy will expect no less than a strong push for the Premier League title and the spotlight on Pellegrini will inevitably intensify.

But the 60-year-old said: "I don't think it is an extra pressure because for me the pressure is exactly the same from the first game of the Premier League to the end.

"We won the Capital One Cup and the pressure in the FA Cup and the Premier League were exactly the same.

"Now in this moment the pressure to win the Premier League is exactly the same."

City's cup commitments over the past three weeks have seen them slip to fourth in the league title race, nine points behind leaders Chelsea but with three games in hand.

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has claimed City retain the upper hand because of their superior goal difference but Pellegrini refuses to get drawn into more verbal jousting with his rival.

He said: "I don't give importance to those things. Maybe some parts of the newspapers think some managers are very smart or play mind games, but I don't read those things."

Pellegrini is not fazed by the challenge facing his side over their remaining 12 games, in which they must also climb over Liverpool and Arsenal to claim the title.

He said: "I am not concerned but, of course, it is better if we had already played those three games and won, but Chelsea did it, so we must do it in the future.

"If we want to win the Premier League you must do things better than other teams and maybe small things or little things can make the difference.

"But I'm not only talking about Chelsea. Liverpool have a lot of options and Arsenal also."

One area of worry for Pellegrini, however, is the recent lack of goals scored by his forwards.

Having overpowered a number of sides earlier in the campaign, the goals from City's prolific front line have dried up.

Alvaro Negredo has scored 23 goals this term but none in his last eight appearances. Edin Dzeko has also not added to his tally of 17 in his last eight outings.

Sergio Aguero, top scorer with 26, has not scored since January and, despite only recently returning from a five-game lay-off, is now facing another spell out.

Pellegrini said: "It's difficult to understand. It's one of the reasons why we are not going so well.

"The other time when Sergio was injured we could cover him without problem but in this last month we are not scoring too many goals and we are conscious about that.

"It's not easy to say one reason why that happened but of course we are worried about that."

Aguero has undergone a scan on the hamstring injury suffered in Barcelona in midweek. The results are not yet clear but Pellegrini expects the Argentinian to be out for a fortnight.

He said: "I am concerned about not having the possibility of using Sergio more this season. He is a very important player for us.

"Unfortunately for him, he has had two or three injuries. I hope he can recover."

TEAMtalk Facebook Fan Page

The TEAMtalk fan page is a great place to meet like minded people, have football related discussions and make new friends.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

H

e made his power play to try and get Sheikhy to raise his wages or trade him to PSG. PSG were probably not interested and he is stuck with no cake and no vacation. @Jay_D> Surely you jest about FFP being real, right? All Platini is doing is making billionaries pay measly fines, so he and his cronies can get rich. If a fool can pay 50 mil for David Luiz, he will happily pay some fine to UEFA. FFP has failed as for it to succeed UEFA had to take it...

Synergy
Toure: I am staying with City

G

uess we can expect Toure's explanation of his behaviour around the same time Pete Townshend publishes his book then.

ceeps
Toure: I am staying with City

D

amn you Yaya, don't scare me like that! I only ate the icing. I didn't eat the soft and scrumptious middle - I will buy you another cake!

MCFC87
Toure: I am staying with City

Footer 365

Transfer News: Hull City begin talks to sign Renne defender Jean-Armel Kana-Biyik

Hull City are in talks to sign defender Jean-Armel Kana-Biyik from French club Rennes, according to Sky sources.

Dunga replaces Luiz Felipe Scolari as manager of Brazil after World Cup semi-final exit

Brazil have appointed Dunga as their new national team manager following the resignation of Luiz Felipe Scolari.

Champions League: Celtic beat KR Reykjavic 4-0 at Murrayfield

Celtic eased into the second qualifying round of the Champions League with a 4-0 victory over KR Reykjavik.

Mail Box

Anyone But Rooney. Or Baines. Or Hart.

There isn't a great deal of excitement in the Mailbox regarding England's potential new captain, but we have good stuff on Gerrard's development and a one club man team...

Goodbye Patrice And Farewell Steven...

Man United fans say a fond farewell to Patrice Evra in the mailbox while there are also thoughts on Steven Gerrard's retirement from England duty. Plus, some rare cricket bantz...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property