Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini ensured his final season at the Etihad wouldn’t be without silverware with his men coming out on top against Liverpool in the Capital One Cup final on Sunday afternoon.
Pellegrini rejoiced in his third trophy in as many seasons with City, and his winning tenure could land him another big job in the Premier League with the likes of Arsenal looking for a long-term replacement for manager Arsene Wenger.
Should Wenger be asked to step down?
Pellegrini’s impending summer exit has divided opinion, as has his next destination, but his performance in charge of the big-spenders could well attract the attention of clubs in England. Chelsea were quickly linked following the news that he would be leaving the Etihad Stadium at the end of his contract, but fellow Londoners Arsenal might consider the Chilean a good replacement for Arsene Wenger should the latter leave at the end of his 2017 deal as expected.
Arsenal are looking for a manager of a similar mould to that of their incumbent, and Pellegrini does share a lot of similarities to that of the French coach. Both managers have a reputation for a calm demeanor even in difficult times, something players have also vouched for. Rarely do their emotions affect their press conferences or boil over into a serious incident on the dugout, and that will be important for the Gunners.
With the squad having a blend of superstars and players of more humble backgrounds, they need a manager who can control a dressing room and not fall out with his players due to mistreatment. Pellegrini is renowned for being a man who can bring a group together rather than rip them apart, but also isn’t afraid to use discipline when required.
Pellegrini favours penetration over possession
There’s also the matter of playing style. Wenger favours attacking football, but perhaps places to much emphasis on keeping possession than getting the ball forward to create chances. This is where Pellegrini slightly differs. The Chilean coach has sides who boast high levels of possession in games, but through the intensity of their place to get the ball and hammer the side into submission.
His Manchester City side would have both their fullbacks in an advanced area, making it incredibly difficult for an opponent to play out of the back, and he’s managed to win a title in his first team at the club too. Wenger just hasn’t been able to get his side over the line, and with his tenure at Arsenal slowly coming to an end, the club hierarchy are desperate for a strong candidate who can keep them competitive.
Pellegrini would certainly get more goals from the side due to his ruthless attacking approach which may be the difference in future title races, so could Arsenal consider the Man City man to replace Wenger?