Pellegrini on the brink
City boss faces sack after derby defeat
Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini fended off questions about his future after his side’s dismal 4-2 derby defeat at Old Trafford.
After being joint top of the table in January, City now find themselves in fourth position, 12 points off the summit having played one more match than leaders Chelsea.
Pellegrini’s team are now four points behind United and just five ahead of fifth-placed Southampton with six matches remaining.
Sources said Pellegrini’s position was not under immediate threat last week following the 2-1 defeat to Crystal Palace, but the inept performance at Old Trafford is hardly likely to improve his long-term job prospects at the club.
Pellegrini dodged questions about his future after the defeat. “I am not talking about my position,” he said. “It is not important.”
He did admit the blame should lie with him though.
“I always think it is my responsibility, always.”
Pellegrini also admitted that his side have thrown their season “into the garbage”.
City never looked like recovering once Ashley Young had equalised Sergio Aguero’s opener.
Before half-time the Blues were 2-1 down thanks to Marouane Fellaini’s header and Juan Mata added a third after the restart before Chris Smalling scored United’s final goal in the 73rd minute.
Aguero’s second came too late to inspire City to mount a comeback, and Pellegrini’s opposite number Van Gaal was full of joy after the match.
When asked whether he regarded United as the best team in Manchester, Van Gaal said: “We are at this moment four points ahead so that is a fact.”