Mancini eyeing City stay
Manager Roberto Mancini believes Manchester City have become one of the best clubs in the world and wants to stay for many years to prove it.
City have made considerable progress since Mancini took charge almost two years ago, winning the FA Cup last season and launching a serious Barclays Premier League title bid this term. Further success could make the former Inter Milan boss a target for other clubs, but he is keen to see his work at the Etihad Stadium earn greater reward.
On the eve of a Champions League clash with Villarreal, the 46-year-old, who succeeded Mark Hughes in December 2009, said: "I started to work here two years ago. I have worked hard to build a good team and I think I would like to stay here another three or four years because I think in this moment Manchester City is one of the best clubs in the world."
The FA Cup triumph was City's first trophy success for 35 years while this year's league start - topping the table with seven wins and a draw from eight games - is their best in any division since 1897. Mancini also appears to have enhanced his position through his handling of the ongoing Carlos Tevez situation, which has earned him plaudits.
On Tuesday night City need to kickstart their European campaign after the disappointing 2-0 loss to Bayern Munich three weeks ago, a game remembered for Tevez's alleged refusal to play as a substitute.
League games against Blackburn and Aston Villa have been won convincingly since, but the Tevez issue has cast a shadow over the club. The Argentina international is the subject of disciplinary proceedings and is highly unlikely to be recalled, but Mancini did not want to discuss the situation.
He said: "We need to think only about the team, the Champions League and the Premier League."
Sergio Aguero trained on Monday morning and could return to the side after injury with Mario Balotelli, impressive in the 4-1 defeat of Villa on Saturday, suspended. David Silva, Samir Nasri and Edin Dzeko, all substitutes at the weekend as Mancini juggled his resources, could also come back in.
Villarreal have lost both of their games in the competition and City want to maximise their back-to-back home and away matches against the Spaniards to get into contention at the top of the group.
Mancini said: "Villarreal are a good team. They are used to playing Champions League, they have done so many times in the past 10 years. It will be hard because they play football very well. But for us I don't think it is as important to play well or not well - it is important we win this game. I think if we win this game I think we can also win the group."