Football: Pellegrini threatens Hebei shake-up

Ex-Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini has threatened a shake-up at big-spending Hebei China Fortune after two defeats in his first two games in charge.
Ex-Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini has threatened a shake-up at big-spending Hebei China Fortune after two defeats in his first two games in charge. PHOTO: AFP

(AFP) - Ex-Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini threatened a shake-up at big-spending Hebei China Fortune after two defeats in his first two games in charge.

The Chilean cut a frustrated figure as Hebei lost 2-3 away to Yanbian Fude on Saturday, a week after slumping 3-0 to Chinese Super League leaders Guangzhou Evergrande.

Ambitious Hebei have splashed the cash this year but big signings Gervinho and Ezequiel Lavezzi missed Saturday's game through suspension and injury respectively.

Pellegrini was still able to call on former Queens Park Rangers midfielder Stephane Mbia, Turkey defender Ersan Gulum and several Chinese internationals for the clash.

But Pellegrini's men were no match for modestly budgeted Yanbian, whose marquee signing, Gambia's Bubacarr Trawally scored his 10th goal of the season.

"I can't believe we didn't win this game," Pellegrini fumed afterwards.

"We created five to six golden chances but in the last couple of minutes of the first half we gave away a stupid penalty."

When asked if Hebei, currently fifth in the standings, had given him funds to spend in the next transfer window, Pellegrini suggested some players could be shown the door.

"I don't want to think about next season right now," he said, adding: "There are still five games left this season and the players have to show they are worth the money the club paid for them."

Luiz Felipe Scolari's Evergrande took a step towards their sixth consecutive Chinese Super League title by trouncing Liaoning Whowin 6-2.

Jackson Martinez and former Spurs midfielder Paulinho were among the scorers as Evergrande stayed six points clear of second-placed Jiangsu Suning with five games remaining.