Pellegrini expects City players to be professional

LONDON • Manuel Pellegrini believes that his Manchester City players could not be considered "top professionals" if they slacked off in the expectation of him being replaced by Pep Guardiola at the end of the season.

The City manager said on Wednesday that he harboured no fears about a drop in standards among the squad as they contemplate the prospect of a future without the Chilean in charge.

Pellegrini insisted that he had sought no clarification from the club's Abu Dhabi owners about his position at this stage and said he would "know in the right moment exactly what happens about my future".

City are thought to be in pole position to acquire Guardiola's services when he leaves Bayern Munich at the end of the season.

"You have a good connection with the players and that is the most important thing to be a good manager," he said.

"But I don't think that a professional player will have any problems if he is listening or reading about things that may happen next year."

"So I am absolutely sure nobody in the squad has any problems or doubts about what we're doing."

Pellegrini said he is more concerned about returning City to winning ways after a poor run of results culminating in a 2-1 defeat by Arsenal on Monday.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 25, 2015, with the headline 'Pellegrini expects City players to be professional'. Print Edition | Subscribe