Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 17 September 2014

Pellegrini prepares for City debut

Manuel Pellegrini is set to meet the press for the first time

Manuel Pellegrini is set to face the media for the first time as Manchester City manager.

Almost four weeks after his appointment at the Etihad Stadium, the Chilean is due to be formally unveiled alongside new signing Fernandinho at a press conference on Wednesday afternoon.

It will be held at the club's training ground just hours before Pellegrini and the majority of his squad fly to South Africa for the first leg of their pre-season tour.

City, who reported back for training this week, are also participating in the Barclays Asia Trophy in Hong Kong this month before playing a tournament in Munich and a friendly against Arsenal in Helsinki.

Pellegrini's first match in charge will be against SuperSport United in Pretoria on Sunday before City face AmaZulu FC in Durban a week on Thursday.

City have announced that Argentina pair Sergio Aguero and Pablo Zabaleta will not join the squad until next week after being granted extra time off following international duty last month.

David Silva and Jesus Navas, who both played in the recent Confederations Cup for Spain, are excused until the event in Hong Kong.

Having now met most of his players, Pellegrini will have the chance to outline his plans for the coming season as he meets the press. The 59-year-old left Malaga to succeed Roberto Mancini, who paid the price for the club's regression last season.

The Italian was sacked in the final week of the campaign after the club had surrendered their Barclays Premier League title and were surprisingly beaten by Wigan in the FA Cup final. The high-profile arrival of Pellegrini, added to those of Fernandinho and Navas for a combined initial cost of almost £45million, have since heralded a summer of change.

City continue to be linked with numerous other targets despite appearing to have been priced out of a move for £53million-rated Napoli striker Edinson Cavani and losing out to Real Madrid for playmaker Isco. Former captain Carlos Tevez has also left the club for Juventus amid the changes.

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