The Chilean does not believe the fact that he will be replaced at the end of the season has affected Manchester City, who have lost three of four games since the announcement
Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini refutes the suggestion that the impending arrival of Pep Guardiola has had an adverse affect on his side’s recent form.
City have lost three of the last four matches since it was confirmed at the start of February that Guardiola would replace Pellegrini in July, an announcement designed to put an end to months of speculation and uncertainty.
Pellegrini, who was criticised by a section of the club’s support and some prominent media pundits for his decision to play a youthful side at Chelsea at the weekend, heads into Wednesday’s Champions League last 16 clash with Dynamo Kiev under pressure to get a positive result both in Ukraine and in Sunday’s League Cup final.
But he says the prospect of Guardiola’s summer arrival has had no affect on him or his players.
“No, really that is not a problem,” he told reporters at Kiev’s Olympic Stadium. “All the players from the start, they are just thinking in this season that we have important challenges from now until the end of the year, and the best way is to be focused in every game.
READ MORE | Guardiola to raid Bundesliga for signings
“Now it is Champions League, after that we have the final at Wembley on Sunday, and on Wednesday we will return to the Premier League. So it’s very easy because we are focused on having a season that works this year.”
Nevertheless, City are now out of the FA Cup following defeat at Chelsea and are six points off the Premier League pace thanks to back-to-back home defeats at the hands of title rivals Leicester City and Tottenham.
It means Pellegrini is in the midst of one of the most important periods of his City career to date, but he does not believe the heavy loss at Stamford Bridge adds any extra pressure as his side tries to stay alive in three competitions over the next eight days.
“No, I don’t think one game is linked with the other one,” he added. “Unfortunately for us, we had to make a difficult decision against Chelsea, but it was the only clear decision we had to make in this moment.
“If we had a completely fit squad, then a lot more experienced players could have played that game, but that was not the case. We had just 13 players, so I think that it is our intention to continue in all of the competitions, but we couldn’t do that, we had to take a chance, but this is absolutely different, we are now thinking of trying to improve because in the last two years we have arrived in the last 16 for the first time.
“Now we have won the group and we will try to continue, knowing that we have a difficult game here tomorrow.”