Football

Manuel Pellegrini is the right man for Manchester City

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Pellegrini has all the qualities to succeed at the Etihad Stadium (©GettyImages)
Pellegrini has all the qualities to succeed at the Etihad Stadium (©GettyImages).

After sacking Roberto Mancini, Manchester City finally appointed Manuel Pellegrini last month.

The engineer from Chile has quite an emphatic record to boast of and has led second-string teams to lengthy runs in the Champions League, including Villarreal and Malaga.

Recently he was on the verge of making it to the semi-finals of the Champions League with Malaga, having done that already with Villarreal - and it was only two late goals in injury time by eventual finalists Borussia Dortmund, that led to Malaga's folly.

The only blot on his managerial career was perhaps his stint with Real Madrid. Although he managed an all-time high in terms of points achieved, they still finished second to their arch-rivals, Barcelona.

So, what does the Chilean bring to the table for the Citizens?

1. Transfer acumen

Pellegrini is not known for signing players left, right and centre. He often likes to be miserly with his transfer budget - and, as his stints with Malaga and Villarreal stand to prove, he is more likely to try and extract the best of City's current star-studded line up.

Although, the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Kaka were signed during his tenure at Real Madrid, but those were under their Galacticos policy and were completed by the urgency of their president Florentino Perez.

With City having already signed the likes of Fernandinho and Jesus Navas, they are already looking to check the boxes left unattended last season.

Navas would bring the pace they have been lacking on the wings, and the brazilian Fernandinho might combine with Yaya Toure and create a driving force in the midfield which would torment defences with their pace and strength.

One should not expect a lot in the transfer market, barring probably signing another marquee striker with Carlos Tevez having left for Juventus and one should also expect Pellegrini to use the current squad to possibly more glory.

2. Tactical flexibility

Pellegrini is known for using a 4-2-2-2 formation and is always interested in playing two strikers at the front. He also used a 4-2-3-1 at Malaga, which proved very tough to break down at times last season.

City, on the other hand, are coming off a season where they played a stern three at the back which Mancini seemed too fond of to change.

Pellegrini might likely be using a 4-2-2-2 at City, and with the wealth of attacking and defensive midfielders he has, he is likely to be very successful doing that. An able trainer and manager, Pellegrini is very flexible when it comes to the tactics he uses with his sides. That would go a long way in helping him flourish in the highly demanding Premier League.

3. History and heritage

Manuel Pelligrini's first stint in Europe was with Villarreal in 2004, and he hasn't won a great deal of trophies since. But that has been because he hasn't managed a team worthy of challenging for the title, except for a solitary season at Real Madrid.

It has to be said, though, that there he was forced to accommodate players like Cristiano Ronaldo, Kaka, Rafael van der Waart, Esteban Granero, Raul, Guti, Karim Benzema and Gonzalo Higuain in one team, while still thinking of defending their goal. Otherwise, with both Malaga and Villarreal he has a history of overachieving and creating fairytales in leagues and cups.

At City, with a near perfect academy in place and a world-class squad, he has no reason not to continue the heritage.

4. A sense of calm

Mancini, with all his suave and calmness, did get devoid of his temper at times with the media. Pellegrini, though, is a gentle, likeable and polite person. He is not known for giving statements meant to create a ruckus, and is seldom heard criticising referees.

Manchester City are without doubt following the Barcelona dream at present and a manager as consummate as Manuel Pellegrini is just the guy the want - and need.

 

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Topics:
Premier League
Football
Manchester City
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