Belfast Telegraph

Mancini plays down Juve talk

Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini is in no hurry to leave Eastlands.

The Italian has been linked with a move back home to take charge of Juventus, the team he has supported as a boy. Regarding the growing speculation, Mancini said: "It is normal. Every two or three months every player can change squad, every manager can change squad."

Asked if he would choose to stay at City, he responded: "Yes, yes. Absolutely."

In his first full season with City, Mancini is in sight of great success on two fronts. They are on course for a place in the Champions League for the first time with a home match against struggling West Ham to come on Sunday.

Not only that, but City also face Stoke in the FA Cup final at Wembley on May 14 with a chance to end a 35-year wait for a major trophy. Mancini is pulling out all the stops so that Carlos Tevez will be fit for the showpiece match. However the City boss insists his influential club captain will need to play one game at least before then.

That could be against Tottenham - their main rivals for a Champions League spot - on May 10. Tevez returned to Manchester this week after receiving treatment for his hamstring injury in Milan from Argentina team doctor Daniel Martinez.

Mancini said: "Carlos is here and has started running again. We will do everything so he can recover. It is difficult to say if he will play in the final. But that will only happen if he can come back against Tottenham.

"It is very important Carlos is 100%, not 60% or 70%. It is better to have all the players available for the next game but it is impossible at this moment."

Meanwhile, Mancini has asked City fans to respect their Manchester United counterparts and not sing songs about the Munich air crash. The 1-0 win at Blackburn on Monday was marred by chants about the 1958 tragedy which claimed the lives of 23 people.

Mancini: "I did not hear this. I do not know this situation but we should have respect for what happened many years ago. The rivalry is good on the pitch, only on the pitch. "


From Belfast Telegraph