Former Manchester City manager Sven-Goran Eriksson has questioned the club’s decision to announce the arrival of Pep Guardiola during the season, with the Swede throwing his support behind outgoing boss Manuel Pellegrini.
Pellegrini will step aside for Pep Guardiola at season’s end, after City confirmed the capture of the Bayern Munich coach at the beginning of February.
Many have criticised the mid-season announcement, with City still challenging for Premier League and Champions League honours.
City are fourth in the standings, nine points behind leaders Leicester City with a match in hand, while they are also poised to reach the quarter-finals in Europe.
And Eriksson – who led City in 2007-08 before they were bought out by Abu Dhabi United Group – feels for Pellegrini after the Chilean delivered a third trophy to the club via Sunday’s League Cup win over Liverpool.
“Manchester City still have a chance to win the title, it is never good when things like this come out in the middle of the season,” Eriksson told Omnisport.
“It is an unreal situation. You have the team and you know you are only going to have them for a few months more.
“I have seen this before and it is almost never good.”
While Guardiola is overseeing another successful Bundesliga campaign in Bavaria, where the club is also in contention to reach the Champions League quarters, the focus has already turned to his plans for next season.
A list of targets has already been put together by Guardiola, according to reports.
The former Barcelona boss is also under pressure to secure a Champions League for City – should Pellegrini fail to do so – which the club’s hierarchy so desperately crave.
But Eriksson – now in charge of big-spending Chinese Super League outfit Shanghai SIPG – does not believe Guardiola will be fazed by expectations awaiting him at the Etihad Stadium.
“If you take Manchester City of today, there is always going to be pressure,” he added.
“They have money, they invest money and they have fantastic football players.
“The pressure will be there but Guardiola is used to that.”