Man City Dismiss Roberto Manciniby Jack Kitson / 14 May 2013, 09:28Tweet
Manchester City have finally put an end to one of the worst kept secrets in football by sacking manager Roberto Mancini. In a cruel twist the Italian departs a year to the day since leading City to their first Premier League title. Mancini failed to win any silverware, finished a distant second to rivals Man Utd in the league and once again failed to make any sort of impact in the Champions League, while his man-management skills have constantly been criticised in the media.
Assistant Brian Kidd has been placed in charge of the first team for the remainder of the season and is likely to be at the helm for their summer tour to America. Malaga boss Manuel Pellegrini remains the hot bookmakers favourite for the job, with Sky Bet pricing the Chilean at just 2/7. On Sunday the former Real Madrid manager denied that he was heading towards the Etihad but with Mancini now officially axed City are expected to make their move.
The 58-year-old impressively led minnows Malaga to the quarter-finals of the Champions League earlier this season, only to be denied by a stunning late comeback by Borussia Dortmund. They still have a chance to finish in the top four of La Liga but even if they do they will be unable to qualify for Europe’s elite competition due to financial problems, which could be a major factor in Pellegrini’s decision to depart.
At the moment it looks like a one-horse race but other candidates to look out for include Real Madrid’s Jose Mourinho who is still the second favourite at 13/2 in the Next Man City Manager Market, while the soon to be out of work Rafa Benitez is available at 16/1, with PSG's Carlo Ancelotti at 22/1.
Mancini will no doubt have numerous offers to make an instant return to the game in what is likely to be an action packed summer in the manager merry-go-round. Ligue 1 champions PSG could be a tempting option for the 48-year-old, while Real Madrid are likely to be looking for a new manager.
The former Inter Milan boss succeeded Mark Hughes at City back in 2009 and in his first full season in charge led them to FA Cup glory, which was their first major trophy in 35 years. Last season City won their first top-flight league title for 44 years following a truly dramatic end to the final day, where they scored twice in the final few minutes to snatch the title from Man Utd’s grasp. He was awarded with a five-year deal last summer but following a barren 2012/13 campaign he now finds himself out in the wilderness.