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Pellegrini taunts Mourinho in style wars

04 May 2015, 10:43

London -Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini has stepped up his war of words with Jose Mourinho by claiming he would never be satisfied to win the Premier League playing in the cautious style of newly crowned champions Chelsea.

Pellegrini's side saw their reign as champions officially ended on Sunday when Chelsea beat Crystal Palace to secure the points they needed to take the title away from Eastlands.

But, in the latest verbal jousting between two old rivals, Pellegrini refused to accept that Chelsea's achievement was worthy of much praise because of the ultra-conservative tactics adopted by Blues boss Mourinho in the second half of the season.

Pellegrini had already accused Mourinho's men of playing with the negativity of a "small team" after their 1-1 draw at Eastlands earlier in the campaign.

And, speaking after his team's 1-0 win at Tottenham on Sunday, he was quick to highlight the more swashbuckling style in which City won the league last season.

"Chelsea won the Premier League and they won the League Cup. We did exactly the same last year, scoring more goals in another style," Pellegrini said.

"It is important for the Premier League and it is important for the fans to play attractive football. That's why I just said we won playing another style.

"I am not thinking about the (13-point) gap (between the clubs). We scored 102 goals in the Premier League last season.

"This team continues as the top scoring team. That side is important, to continue winning in that sense."

 Under pressure 

Mourinho's team have scored 69 goals in the league, two fewer than City, and Pellegrini's swipe was clearly intended to irritate the Portuguese coach, who has been angered at continued accusations that Chelsea are boring to watch.

But aiming a few barbs at Mourinho won't keep the spotlight from switching to Pellegrini's future with City in the final weeks of the season.

Sergio Aguero's first half winner at White Hart Lane effectively guaranteed second placed City will qualify for the Champions League next season, but that was the very minimum expected by the club's Abu Dhabi-based owners.

Pellegrini's failure to establish City as a force in Europe -- they bowed out in the last 16 of the Champions League after scraping through the group stage -- and their less than convincing league form has prompted numerous reports that the Chilean might be sacked in the close-season.

Also read: The best Mourinho quotes of Chelsea's season

Bayern Munich's Pep Guardiola and Borussia Dortmund's Jurgen Klopp have already been touted as potential replacements.

Asked if he was concerned about losing his job, Pellegrini said: "I'm not going to answer that question. It is important for this club to improve, but you have to understand you cannot always beat the other important clubs like Chelsea, Manchester United, Arsenal and Liverpool.

"It's important to finish as near the top as possible and then we will analyse what happened and what we need to do."

Meanwhile, Mauricio Pochettino admitted Tottenham's eighth defeat in their last nine meetings with City was a potentially fatal blow to his side's hopes of qualifying for the Champions League.

The sixth placed north Londoners are now seven points behind fourth placed Manchester United, with only three games remaining, and are likely to have to settle for a Europa League berth

"We are sixth in the table and have three games to play. We needed to get the three points today to get closer to Manchester United," Pochettino said.



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