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Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini knew about Pep Guardiola's appointment

650   //    06 Feb 2016, 18:00 IST
Football Soccer - Sunderland v Manchester City - Barclays Premier League - Stadium of Light - 2/2/16 Manchester City's manager Manuel Pellegrini Action Images via Reuters / Lee Smith Livepic
Pellegrini has dismissed suggestions of being kept in the dark

Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini has dismissed suggestions that Pep Guardiola was manoeuvred into the club behind his back.

Pellegrini, whose side are set for a crucial showdown with Premier League leaders Leicester City on Saturday, said he was not kept in the dark as the Bayern Munich boss was ushered into the City hot seat.

Guardiola, who won back-to-back German league titles with Bayern and is on course for a third after joining in 2013, agreed a three-year contract with City this week and will begin work ahead of next season.

“It’s important for everyone to know that I knew what was happening and that no one was doing anything behind my back," Pellegrini told reporters on Friday.

"It’s important to talk about this season and not the next one."

Next game against Leicester City

Pellegrini's immediate concern is Saturday's encounter at the Etihad Stadium where his side can overhaul surprise challengers Leicester at the Premier League summit.

A victory for City would see them draw level on 50 points with Claudio Ranieri's side, but ahead of them on goal difference with 13 matches of the campaign then remaining.

Defeat, however, would not spell the end of City's hopes of winning a third title in the last five seasons, Pellegrini said.

“It’s not the biggest game of the season so far -- we can win or lose this game and the Premier League will not end here," added the Chilean, whose side are still in all four competitions they entered.

"We have 39 more points to fight for. You cannot think you’re champion if you win and if you lose, there are lots more points.

“It’s a good game, a big game but not decisive.”

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