Roberto Mancini continues to prove to be a difficult manager to work out.
His tactics, notably the switch to a back three, have provided mixed results, at best, while his man management style seems to be unnecessarily combative.
The latest player to fall foul of Mancini’s wrath is captain Vincent Kompany, and while the media may have hyped the disagreement between manager and player, the Belgian is not the first player to clash with Mancini.
Kompany had missed two months through injury only to return for Belgium in their 1-0 win over Macedonia. Mancini was not impressed.
"He didn't play for us for 60 days and then he went to play for the Belgium team.” Mancini told the BBC. "I did not agree with this. I think sometimes some managers of national teams should understand the situation."
The 48-year-old City manager added: "This player plays for the club. The club, every month, pay his salary."
The Sun has now linked Kompany with a move, with European giants Bayern Munich, Barcelona and Real Madrid monitoring the situation. To say it would be a blow for City to lose their captain and defensive lynchpin would be an understatement to say the least.
Mancini has also derided Samir Nasri’s inconsistency, saying after the 4-0 win over Newcastle, according to The Guardian, that he “would like to give him a punch”. Speaking to French sports broadcaster beIN Sport, Nasri said: "Mancini has shown a little proof of bad faith when he said he wanted to punch me.
"I've not had a good season, I know it, I'm aware of that. I am the first to be self-critical. But it's not true that I'm playing at 50%.
"I think the coach still doesn't handle English very well and sometimes uses expressions that aren't really suitable."
This follows the tumultuous relationship between Mancini and former player Mario Balotelli; Mancini and Kolo Toure; Mancini and Joe Hart, the list goes on. While it can work to challenge footballers rather than cower in their presence, Mancini’s verbal rockets are shot off and scattered around the City dressing room and sow the seeds of discontent.
With the Blues underperformance this season Mancini could do without a disgruntled dressing room, as it will be far easy to jettison the manager than the players. At first the Italian appeared to have a plan, a method of kicking players out of their comfort zone and shift their focus from their gigantic pay packets and on to the pitch, but now it just seems maniacal, and could end up costing Mancini more than just trophies.
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