Malaga Coach Manuel Pellegrini has ‘categorically denied’ having reached an agreement to replace Roberto Mancini at Manchester City.
Reports over the weekend suggested that City had reached an agreement for the Chilean to be their new manager for 2013-14, whilst the 59-year-old also hinted on Saturday that his future may be away from La Rosaleda.
However, after watching his side’s 0-0 home draw with Sevilla, Pellegrini’s tone had shifted.
“I categorically deny that I am the new Manchester City Coach, nothing has been signed and no agreement reached,” the tactician told reporters on Sunday evening.
“I’ve been fortunate enough, and very proud, that every year the big clubs are interested in me.
“I have an agreement with Malaga not to talk to anyone and nothing has been agreed with any other outfit. I hope the future of this club will become somewhat clearer in the next few days.
“On staying, possibilities always exist in every way. I have not signed with Manchester City, nor with Roma or Napoli, nor with PSG.
“I hope in the next 15 days to plan for next year, I imagine that in this break there will be meetings. With [Vice-President Moayad] Shatat it is sufficient, he takes care of the footballing side of things here and I have very good communication with him. I hope that the future is planned out in these 15 days.”
Pellegrini then turned his attention to yesterday’s draw. A win for Real Sociedad on Monday evening will make Champions League qualification mathematically impossible for Malaga.
“I’m pleased with the team’s performance tonight, in what was a difficult match against a tough rival, as Sevilla always are.
“It was also a very intense local derby from the start. We came from a midweek match in which we were left with nine men on the pitch, which obviously led to physical over-exertion for the other players.
“We also suffered significant injuries during this game, so I think the team responded very well, in terms of hard work and intensity. Both teams created equal goal opportunities, but overall I’m happy with our performance tonight.”
The point leaves the Anchovies at risk from being overtaken by Real Betis for the sixth in the table, but Pellegrini believes that European qualification, which could be achieved in seventh, is all but theirs.
“There’s normally only a minimal difference in points between teams that qualify for the Champions and Europa League, and those that miss out.
“However I think we’ve got a significant advantage over direct rivals such as Sevilla, Rayo and Getafe, by six or seven points, with nine left in play for them, so we’re going to have to secure our qualification in our next home match against Deportivo.
“At this stage in the competition, gaining a point against a direct rival is crucial.”