LONDON: Manchester City on Friday said they had appointed Malaga coach Manuel Pellegrini to take over from Roberto Mancini, earmarking him as the man to bring long-term success to the English Premier League club.
The confirmation of his appointment came after Pellegrini said he had a verbal agreement to move to northwest England, after nine years in charge at Spanish club Malaga.
A statement on the club’s website mcfc.co.uk said the 59-year-old Chilean had joined on a three-year contract and would take up his role from June 24.
“I am delighted to accept this hugely exciting opportunity,” Pellegrini said.
“The club has a clear vision for success both on and off the pitch and I am committed to making a significant contribution.
“Everything is in place for Manchester City to continue to be successful and I am excited to be able to work with such a talented squad, the executive team and the board to deliver for fans who are renowned for their steadfast support.”
Manchester City won their first league title since 1968 in 2011/12 but although they finished runners-up last season to rivals Manchester United, the campaign was viewed as a disappointment.
Italian Mancini was sacked at the end of the season after City’s shock FA Cup final defeat to Wigan Athletic and following failure to progress beyond the group stage of the Champions League for the second successive year.
City chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak, who has ploughed millions into the club, said of Pellegrini’s appointment: “Manuel is a hugely experienced and successful manager with a proven track record.
“We have been greatly impressed throughout the selection process by his philosophy, his attitude and his commitment to the long term development of Manchester City.
“I am delighted that he has joined us.”
Chief executive Ferran Soriano described Pellegrini as “a very experienced coach with a recognised ability to get the most out of his players and build cohesive teams.
“He shares the club’s approach to football and our ambition to achieve on-field success, coordinating with the wider football support teams to ensure natural progression from the Academy to senior level.”
Pellegrini has managed for more than 25 years in his native Chile, as well as Ecuador and Argentina and has spent nearly a decade at Malaga having previously coached Villarreal and Real Madrid.
Last season, he guided Malaga to the last 16 of the Champions League, where they were controversially beaten by eventual losing finalists Borussia Dortmund.
But Malaga, who finished sixth in La Liga last season, are banned from playing in the Europa League next season because of a one-year ban for infringing UEFA’s financial fair play regulations.
Pellegrini’s appointment at City came shortly after Malaga named former Real boss Bernd Schuster, as his successor.