• Premier League

Malaga tight-lipped over Pellegrini future

ESPN staff
May 16, 2013

Malaga have neither confirmed nor denied reports that coach Manuel Pellegrini will be allowed to leave the club this summer, which would pave the way for him to take over at Manchester City.

Pellegrini has emerged as the favourite to succeed Roberto Mancini at the Etihad Stadium, following the Italian's sacking earlier this week.

Andalucian paper Diario del Sur claimed on Wednesday that Pellegrini's agent Jesus Martinez had negotiated a deal so that the Chilean coach, who has two years left on his contract, can leave on June 30 without any new club activating the €4 million release clause.

However, a spokesperson for Malaga told the BBC that the club is yet to make an official statement about the situation as they were focused on finishing this season's La Liga campaign, but avoided clarifying if the reports were true or not.

"The club will not say anything now," the spokesperson said. "We are still playing our league.

"There remains some fixtures to qualify for the Europa League, so in this moment, officially, we are not saying anything."

"The club has not communicated anything about this. I am not saying [the reports] is true or false, I am just saying that the club officially has not said anything.

"I think that other clubs, Manchester City or whatever other club, have finished their season but Malaga has not finished their season."

Malaga are currently subject to a ban from the next European competition they qualify for after being sanctioned under UEFA's financial rules, but the club still want Pellegrini to help them finish as high up the table as possible this term.

"Out of respect for the fact that we are still playing to finish the league in a position to play in the Europa League, we will not make a communication that the manager will leave or another will join, until we finish," the spokesperson added.

"Probably once we qualify for Europa, there may be a communication and we will say more on this subject."

Pellegrini denied on Sunday that a deal with City had been agreed, but that did little to dampen speculation that the former Real Madrid and Villarreal coach will move to England this summer.

Malaga's star attacking midfielder Isco has also been linked with a move to City, who confirmed a second-place finish in the Premier League by beating Reading 2-0 on Tuesday.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.