Chelsea are considering Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini as Guus Hiddink’s summer successor, according to reports from the Express.
City revealed on transfer deadline day that Pellegrini will be replaced by Bayern Munich gaffer Pep Guardiola at the end of the season, and the Blues are hoping to take advantage of that by luring the Chilean to Stamford Bridge.
Pellegrini has a brilliant record in the English top flight, boasting the third best win ratio, behind only league legends Sir Alex Ferguson and Jose Mourinho.
And despite the announcement of his replacement, the 62-year-old has no anger towards the boards’ decision to bring Guardiola as his successor, given that he knew the former Barcelona boss was always the Sky Blues’ first choice since 2012.
“The club are not doing anything behind my back,” he said. “I knew this a month ago but I don’t think it’s good to have rumour or speculation about these things, so I prefer to announce it today, which I why I have told the players and I have told the media. I also spoke to the club two weeks ago and said that I would do it.”
Meanwhile, an official City club statement read: “Manchester City can confirm that in recent weeks it has confirmed and finalised contractual negotiations with Pep Guardiola to become head coach for the 2016-17 season onwards. The contract is for three years. These negotiations were a re-commencement of discussions that were curtailed in 2012.
“Out of respect for Manuel Pellegrini and the players, the club wishes to make its decision public to remove the unnecessary burden of speculation.
“Manuel, who is fully supportive of the decision to make this communication, is entirely focused on achieving his targets for the season ahead and retains the respect and commitment of all involved with the leadership of the club.”
With Man City still in the running to win four trophies, a successful campaign will greatly increase Pellegrini’s chances of landing a top job at the end of the season.