Relaxed & ready: Pellegrini sets confident tone for a new era at Manchester City

The Chilean breezed through his first press conference as the new manager at the Etihad Stadium, with the Premier League runners-up in safe hands ahead of the new season
By Tom Maston at Carrington

For anyone arriving in the media centre at Manchester City's Carrington training complex on Wednesday, the scene of two rows of chairs and a couple of trays of sandwiches suggested that an understated press conference was about to take place.

In reality, it was the unveiling of the new manager at last season's Premier League runners-up and big-money signing. On an occasion for which much of the football supporting public was waiting, it was strange not to see more glitz and glamour on show for the arrival of Manuel Pellegrini.

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But then that may have been the way he wanted it. Arriving still in his training attire alongside new arrival Fernandinho, the Chilean was clearly relaxed in his new surroundings. The recent tropical temperatures will certainly have helped in that respect.

A "good afternoon" as he entered the room was sign of things to come. Simple and to the point; a tone had been set.

Unlike predecessor Roberto Mancini, the language barrier was no problem for the former Real Madrid coach. A couple of quick glances to the interpreter apart, it was as if he had worked on English shores for a decade rather than just a few weeks.

Assured in his own ability as a manager, the 59-year-old outlined the attractive style in which his team was going to play, confirmed that the signings of Fernandinho and Jesus Navas were his choices and explained the need for an improvement in Europe.

When questioned about chief executive Ferran Soriano's expectation of five trophies in five seasons, Pellegrini responded with: "Just five?" Exuding confidence without seeming arrogant, here is a man who can garner positive responses from supporters and the media alike.

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The issue of a lack of success in Europe was raised and swatted away expertly. There was no 'Special One' moment to really grab the headlines nor a scarf from the club shop to get the photographers excited but that is not what Pellegrini's style.

He is there to get the job done and will do it in his own way. He knows that the club have what it takes to pick up more silverware and has every confidence that he is the right man to do it.

If Pellegrini was as comfortable as you can be when faced with around 40 members of the British press, Fernandinho was almost his polar opposite.

Arms crossed and fidgeting in his seat, he began by the answering the question of his first impressions of the club with just three words: "It's very good." He looked glad that the concentration soon shifted back to the man who had brought him to the North West.

When the talking was over, Pellegrini headed outside for his first photocall where he ensured that his training T-shirt was tucked into his tracksuit bottoms; the very definition of smart-casual and a real reflection of what can be expected of him during his time at the Etihad Stadium.

Relaxed enough to form strong relationships and professional enough to be successful, City fans, from this showing, can be confident that their club is in safe enough hands.

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