Stevan Jovetic has hit out at Manuel Pellegrini, criticising his manager for leaving him out of Manchester City's Champions League squad.
Pellegrini was given the chance to name a revised squad prior to the round of 16 starting later this month, and following the arrival of £25 million striker Wilfried Bony he was forced to leave someone out.
It was Jovetic who was axed, paying the price for City being forced to name a reduced squad of just 21 players compared to the normal 25 afforded to other teams in the competition.
City's slim-line squad comes as a consequence of breaking Financial Fair Play regulations and earlier this season influenced Pellegrini's decision to allow Alvaro Negredo to leave the club after just one season in Manchester.
This time it's Jovetic who has paid the price and his comments in an exclusive interview with The Mirror suggest he could be next through the exit door at the Etihad Stadium.
Now seemingly fourth choice striker, Jovetic insisted he doesn't know where he'll be playing next season, but he hinted at being forced out, saying: "I have not made any decision about my future.
"I will wait until the summer then we will see. But the manager has put other players ahead of me, so maybe this is a message about what he wants to do."
Talking to The Mirror, Jovetic was not short of belief, and revealed his true feelings towards his manager's decision.
"I deserve to play in the Champions League. I know that," he said.
"The manager has killed me with this decision. I feel I deserve my place and other people have told me the same.
"People have told me I am a great player, but it is clear that the manager doesn’t think the same way. I am very disappointed, even now. I don’t think it was a good decision – or the right decision.
“I know that I deserve to be on the list. I told the manager this, but he didn’t want to listen to me. I came here to play in the Champions League.
Hard to watch
City's Champions League dreams get back underway against Barcelona in a repeat of last year's last 16 tie.
The first leg will take place at the Etihad Stadium a week on Tuesday but unlike most involved with City, Jovetic is far from excited about the fixture.
He said: "I have spent all week thinking about it and when we play Barcelona I think it will be very difficult for me.
"I think I helped the team get through the group and, because of that, I am very unhappy that I am out."
The Montenegro striker started the season in fine form, netting twice during City's opening home game of the season against Liverpool.
However he's since found playing time hard to come by as a result of injury and the form of Sergio Aguero, but he's adamant that should not have stopped him realising his Champions League aspirations.
He added: "This year, every time I have played, I think I have done well. I have score five goals in the Premier League without having too many minutes on the pitch.
"I know that we can all have disappointments – that’s football – but I am hurting really bad right now.
“Of course, the squad has been made smaller, but the club knew this at the start of the season. I don’t feel I have had a chance. Okay, I have had injuries but so have other players.”
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