FA Cup - Paper Round: Pellegrini to become next Manchester City boss ‘done deal’

Malaga manager Manuel Pellegrini will take over from Roberto Mancini at Manchester City next season, according to a report in Spain.

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Malaga coach Manuel Pellegrini (Reuters)

The piece, published in Spanish daily AS, is emphatic – and has been picked up by the likes of the Guardian and the Daily Mirror this morning ahead of the FA Cup final.

Meantime, the odds on Pellegrini become the next manager at Eastlands have been slashed dramatically, falling as low as 10-1 with some bookmakers.

“Pellegrini will coach City next season”, AS proclaims, saying that the move became concrete on Friday.

City director Txiki Begiristain had been spotted meeting Pellegrini at the end of April, and has subsequently been given the go-ahead to complete the deal by the club’s owner Sheikh Mansour.

Both Mancini and his perpective Chilean replacement are contracted to their current clubs – for four more and two more years respectively – but Pellegrini is believed to have a €4m (£3.4m) release clause that would be no deterrent given City’s riches.

Mancini, speaking in his press conference on Friday ahead of the Wembley final against Wigan, had been phlegmatic when asked about his future.

"I won seven trophies at Inter in four years and they sacked me after four years," said the 48-year-old. "This is football. I know football enough to understand this situation."

AS’s report also says that Pellegrini’s arrival could also herald the signing of Isco, the talented playmaker who has a release clause of just under £30m.

Elsewhere in transfer land, Mancini might not be the only high-profile name heading out of the Premier League – John Terry is being lined up for an extraordinary move to Turkey.

Galatasaray are the interested party, and with a wage package over three years worth a total of £30m, they believe that they can make it worth the former England captain’s while.

The Turkish giants have already splashed out on Didier Drogba and Wesley Sneijder in recent times, and are looking for European experience to boost their Champions League campaigns, but may be thwarted on Terry.

The Chelsea player is expected to see whether he has a future under the new manager, whoever that turns out to be, before making a decision about any move.

But Wayne Rooney’s options of leaving the country look limited as the Mail claims that there is no interest from Bayern Munich in signing the striker.

The clubs who can feasibly afford the player’s transfer fee and wages are limited, and Bayern were thought to be among Paris Saint-Germain and Chelsea as the only teams in the running. But with 'senior Bayern sources’ telling the paper they were not keen, the choices are dwindling.

Retirements are all the rage at Manchester United this week – the Daily Mirror report that Paul Scholes is likely to follow in the footsteps his manager Sir Alex Ferguson at the end of the season. Scholes will still be around Old Trafford though, and may take up a coaching position under the David Moyes regime.

Another transfer target has emerged for Moyes – Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema. Before the Frenchman left Lyon for the Bernabeu he was heavily-linked with a move to Manchester United, but The Sun says Moyes is keen to renew that interest.

£30m will be needed to prise Benzema away from Spain, but the Red Devils will be in the market for a forward should Rooney depart.

And whether they’re dealing with Jose Mourinho over the transfer or not remains to be seen – the same paper adds that there is an impasse in discussions over the Portuguese leaving Real Madrid to rejoin Chelsea.

Roman Abramovich is unwilling to pay the £17m buy-out in Mourinho’s contract to bring him back to Stamford Bridge.

That means that Mourinho must convince club president Florentino Perez to release him without charge – no easy task with that sort of money on the line. But Real Madrid are already planning for life without their manager, and the thought of Mourinho seeing out the remaining three years of his contract is almost unimaginable.

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