The sacking of Mark Hughes as Manchester City boss wasnâ€™t really a surprise. The fact that he was replaced by former Inter boss Roberto Mancini surprised me slightly.
I wasnâ€™t that impressed with the former Lazio striker when he was Inter boss. To manage Inter didnâ€™t take the best manager in the world as there were already top players at the club when he arrived.
Successful in Italy
Roberto Manciniâ€™s managerial experience has come in Italian football with Fiorentina, Lazio and of course Inter. He won three Serie A league titles with Inter and two cups. He has won the Italian cup with Fiorentina and Lazio.
He has been learning English for awhile in anticipation of a move to the Premier League and is eager to test himself in the English top flight. Only time will tell if he proves to be successful with City but he has a tough task on his hands satisfying the ambitious owners at Eastlands.
The move for Mancini however smacks of a temporary appointment. He was available and City needed somebody to fill the gap until a better option came along in the summer. The City owners want the best available boss for the club and may just get their wish this summer.
Inter boss Jose Mourinho has apparently fallen out of love with the Italian game and Inter. Heâ€™s had rows with players and more recently had a row with Inter president Massimo Moratti. And anybody that knows Inter knows that thereâ€™s only one winner when managers mess with Moratti.
The two have strong personalities but there can only be one winner. Iâ€™m not suggesting that Moratti would sack Mourinho, because that would be cutting his nose off to spite his face but he could make life very difficult for the â€˜Special Oneâ€™.
I can see Mourinho quitting as Inter boss at the end of the season, no matter what happens this season. Mourinho would then be that rare creature a world class manager without a club. I think Mourinho would find the City job a challenge worthy of his ego and ability. However he would be wanted by most of the top clubs in Europe, so maybe he would decide his future lies elsewhere.
City has already been linked with current Russia manager Guus Hiddink. The Dutchman took over Chelsea last season and performed admirable as the Blues boss but couldnâ€™t make up the ground in the title race. He did however win the FA Cup in May.
The majority of players, fans and pundits wanted the Dutch boss to stay at Stamford Bridge; he only signed a short-term contract and always said he would only stay the length of that contract. He honoured his word and honoured his contract with the Russian national side. The Russians however failed to make the World Cup finals after a play-off defeat to Slovakia.
He has performed superbly with the national sides of South Korea, Australia and Russia until the failure to qualify for next yearâ€™s World Cup. However his spells in charge of all the nations have to be deemed a success. For me he would have been second choice behind Mourinho before Mancini took over.
The arrival of Mancini as Manchester City boss hasnâ€™t exactly caused widespread jubilation amongst City fans. Some were glad to get rid of Mark Hughes but some thought that Hughes wasnâ€™t given enough time.
I donâ€™t think Mancini was anybodies first choice to replace Hughes at City. For now though, the City fans will be hoping that Mancini can help City progress and make the Champions League spots. That is rumoured to be the objective the City board have set for Mancini. The Italian knows that if that target is not achieved then he could be following in Mark Hughes footsteps out of the Eastlands exit door.
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