Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini: No news on Kevin de Bruyne
Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini has continued to rebuff questions about Kevin de Bruyne.
Pellegrini faced a series of queries about the Belgian, the subject of a reported £58million offer from City, after his side's 2-0 win over Watford on Saturday.
Earlier in the day it was reported the Wolfsburg playmaker was in Manchester for a medical but, in keeping with a stance of indifference adopted throughout City's lengthy apparent pursuit, Pellegrini remained non-committal.
"I don't have any news," Pellegrini said at his post-match press conference at the Etihad Stadium. "You have news?
"I will answer the same way I answer all the questions that you or the other journalists ask me about rumours. I can't talk about rumours."
It was then suggested that the reports could no longer be considered rumours because Wolfsburg have commented and a photograph of De Bruyne apparently in Manchester has also emerged.
But, in an odd exchange, Pellegrini said: "He has signed? It is the first thing I know... He has not signed. I answer what I want and not what you want. I cannot talk about things they never told me, that he has signed a contract."
It was then suggested that Pellegrini might at least know that De Bruyne was in Manchester, but again he refused to answer.
He said: "I was involved in the game and not thinking about what was happening in Manchester. I was thinking about what happened in 90 minutes against Watford."
There was, however, a slight hint that another signing might be imminent as he discussed the goalscoring performance of Raheem Sterling who, for the moment at least, remains City's record signing at £49million.
Sterling scored his first goal for City in the second minute of the second half and Fernandinho doubled the lead as the Barclays Premier League leaders finally broke the resistance of the spirited Hornets.
Pellegrini said: "I think playing with creative players such as Kun (Sergio Aguero), (Samir) Nasri, (David) Silva, Yaya (Toure) - sorry not to tell aloud another player, just the players that we have - I think he will improve a lot, scoring more goals.
"The good thing of Sterling is that he is not just about scoring goals, he works a lot during the whole game. There are a lot of reasons why we got him and he is demonstrating that he is not (just) an expensive player, but a good player."
City have made a flying start to the season, winning their first four games without conceding a goal. In all they have now won a club record 10 in succession and they are already eight points ahead of chief title rivals and champions Chelsea.
Pellegrini said: "I think we played this game in exactly the same way we played the other three games, as a very consistent team.
"We had different rivals in the four games but we found the solutions, especially today when we didn't create many chances because Watford defended very well. In that sense I am very happy about that."
Defeat was Watford's first of the season after three successive draws.
Manager Quique Sanchez Flores admitted holding City out was always likely to prove difficult for his side.
He said: "I think we played well in the first half in defensive terms but it was difficult to resist City for the full match. It was very difficult to play against this kind of opponent.
"They have a lot of velocity in the transition, they have a lot of quality in the pass, they are physically strong.
"For the future we will learn from this kind of experience. It is very difficult to play against City in these conditions."