Manchester City boss plays down talk of quadruple

Manuel Pellegrini has played down Manchester City’s chances of winning a Premier League, UEFA Champions League, FA Cup and League Cup quadruple.

The Blues are currently third place in the league table, just one point behind second-placed Leicester City and within two of leaders Arsenal. Having topped their Champions League group ahead of Juventus they have been handed a favourable last-16 tie with Dynamo Kiev, whilst Norwich City await them in the third round of the FA Cup this coming weekend.

But focus is now on the League Cup, as Pellegrini and his players make the short trip to Merseyside to face Everton in the first leg of the semi-final on Wednesday evening. This competition will be the first to be concluded when the final takes place on 28 February, but the Chilean coach has played down suggestions it would be the first of four honours his side win this term.

“It’s a lot of games,” said Pellegrini. “If you ask me I always prefer to play in all the competitions, but I am worried about the FA Cup. After the first rounds you start having to postpone your Premier League games to continue. I am not sure if you can continue in all the competitions. I think if you play the semi-final of the FA Cup and you are in the semi-finals of the Champions League, then you don’t have time to play one of the [Premier League] games. You don’t have any free midweek’s. There is no midweek to play it [game 36] before you finish the Premier League.”

Meanwhile, speculation over the future of the former Real Madrid and Malaga boss has intensified over the past 24 hours following the admission from Pep Guardiola that he will coach in the Premier League next season. The Bayern Munich boss has long been linked with a move to City, where he would be reunited with former Barcelona colleagues Txiki Begiristain and Ferran Soriano, but Pellegrini appears to be fairly relaxed over his future.

“My way of thinking is that, if I have the option to renew here for five years more and don’t win the title, or to win the title and be sacked, I’d prefer to win the title and be sacked,” he said. “For a manager, your work is to win the title. I think that if you are the owner of a club, you must have the option to replace the manager if they win the title or if they don’t win the title.”

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