With Pep Guardiola ready to take over Manchester City next month, the Citizens’ former coach, Manuel Pellegrini, leaves the team as one of the best managers in the history of the club.
The match against Swansea was Manuel Pellegrini’s last one on the team’s bench, with the 62-year-old coach leaving the club after three years as the squad’s manager.
The Citizens were tremendous in the Chilean’s first season, as they earned 86 points and scored 102 goals to win the title for a second time in three years. However, things didn’t continue the same way for the side.
More specifically, they were second last season with 79 points (losing the title to Chelsea), while finished this campaign in fourth place with 66 points, 15 points away from league champions Leicester City.
That said, City have managed to progress under Pellegrini, the 62-year-old manager faced two major problems, one; most of the newly acquired players didn’t perform at high standards for a long period of time and two; key players of the team, like Yaya Toure, Sergio Aguero, David Silva and captain Vincent Kompany, faced many injuries that prevented them from taking part in many crucial matches.
However, his three-year tenure in the club was successful, he became the only manager in England that won three trophies in the past three years (one league title and two Capital One Cups), while this season he took City all the way to the semi-finals of the Champions League for the first time in the club’s history.
Although the team had many ups and downs in that three-year period, the most negative aspect of his presence in the Etihad Stadium was the administration’s decision to announce in February that Pep Guardiola will take over the squad next season.
The reason was that this decision significantly affected the players and the coaching staff, with the squad being only three points away from the top of the standings at that point, but ending the season 15 points behind Claudio Ranieri’s club.
Pellegrini, though, managed to become one of the most successful managers in City’s history, having 101 victories, 27 draws and 39 losses in 167 matches in all competitions.
Most importantly, he earned the respect and admiration of the club’s administration, players and fans, which certainly was his biggest accomplishment as the Citizens’ coach. That said, what is next for the Chilean manager?
It’s certain that many clubs from both England (Everton, Watford) and Spain (Valencia) will try to hire him, thanks to his previous successful spells in Villareal, Malaga and Real Madrid, respectively, while Italy can also be his next destination (AC Milan).
Pellegrini will likely not rush to make his decision. “I will now starting thinking about the future,” he said. “I don’t want to decide just in one week. I will see different options.”
Although Pellegrini hasn’t had the farewell season he would have hoped for, it’s worth mentioning that he leaves City with a great legacy and a fantastic squad. Pep will look to take the club to the next level, and will no doubt be grateful to Pellegrini that he starts his Manchester City career with such a talented team.