Mancini laughs off City job speculation

Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has laughed off the latest round of speculation over his position at the Etihad Stadium.

Football News: Roberto Mancini.

It was reported this week that City's director of football Txiki Begiristain recently dined with the agent of Malaga boss Manuel Pellegrini, the Chilean who has been touted as a potential successor to Mancini.

Mancini jokingly swore when asked about Pellegrini at a press conference in February and, although clearly irritated by recurring stories suggesting he could leave City this summer, he continues to brush off the matter.

When asked about the latest rumours, he jokingly said: "I hope that he had a good dinner!"

City have not commented on whether Begiristain did meet Jesus Martinez in Madrid but, even if he did, as the agent represents a number of players it could have been for other reasons.

But besides that, Mancini feels his record at City, having won an FA Cup and a Barclays Premier League title, bears scrutiny and, after signing a five-year contract last summer, is confident in his position.

The Italian, speaking at his press conference to preview this weekend's game at Swansea, pointed out that Pellegrini is merely one of several names the press have linked with his job this season.

He said: "In general, in the last six months, you have written everything.

"You started six or seven months ago with Pep (Guardiola), (Jose) Mourinho, Pellegrini, (Carlo) Ancelotti, Brendan Rodgers.

"I have four years (left on my) contract. I know that I work with serious people, like (chairman) Khaldoon (Al Mubarak) and (owner) Sheikh Mansour.

"I think that if there was another manager who won three trophies in three years you would say nothing about this manager.

"I don't know why you, in general, continue to ask or say these things."

Mancini, who has also won a Community Shield and hopes to add another FA Cup this month, claims his future has not even been a matter for discussion with Khaldoon.

He said: "Never, never. We don't have to talk about this. We don't have any problems about this.

"We have a good relationship. In three years we have won three trophies and now we have another chance to get another trophy."

Mancini has not spoken to Begiristain about his reported meeting but the pair are working together on potential transfer targets.

Mancini said: "We talk about the future, about the players.

"Txiki goes around the world for his job. For this reason I don't have any problem if he goes to a dinner with Pellegrini's manager, or Brendan Rodgers' manager.

"I think this is not true, but if he went I don't have any problem."

City's campaign has not matched the heights of last season with their title defence proving a disappointing one. Yet they can still end respectably by securing second spot in the table and beating Wigan in the FA Cup final next week.

Mancini said: "If in three years I didn't win (anything), okay, but we have done a good job until now. We won.

"We have a chance to win (the FA Cup) and are in second position.

"The chairman can take any decision about his manager but at the moment we don't have any problem.

"We didn't have any problem one month ago, two months ago.

"I am frustrated because I wanted to win a second Premier League and we had a chance, but sometimes you can do mistakes. This is life, this can happen."

City are now expected to make a number of changes to their squad in the summer in an attempt to make up the ground lost to new champions Manchester United next season, as well as performing better in Europe.

Mancini failed to land any of his prime targets last summer, eventually making a number of mostly disappointing signings close to the transfer deadline.

He will hope to move earlier and more decisively this time.

He said: "I think we need to improve our team.

"The next Premier League will be more difficult, but we have a team to try to win the Premier League.

"It's important to do a better job in the Champions League and for this we need to improve our team, because at the moment we are too far from the first five or six teams in the Champions League.

"The Champions League is really strange, if you are lucky maybe you can go through or arrive in the semi-final, football is strange, but after we need to improve our team."

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