bwin has installed Malaga manager Manuel Pellegrini as the odds-on favourite to replace Roberto Mancini at Manchester City after the Italian was sacked by the club late last night.
The Italian’s dismissal had been expected ever since reports emerged on Friday night that Pellegrini had been lined up to replace Mancini no matter what the result of Saturday’s FA Cup final, which City lost 1-0 to Wigan courtesy of a 90th minute Ben Watson header.
The defeat at Wembley capped a poor season for City, who made a dismal defence of their Premier League title, finishing a distant second to champions Manchester United, and who crashed out of the Champions League at the group stages.
Against this backdrop, Mancini’s title win in 2012 and an FA Cup triumph a year earlier were not enough to save his job.
A statement from the club said Mancini “had failed to achieve any of the club’s targets, with the exception of qualification for next season’s Champions League” and that Brian Kidd will take charge for the remainder of the season.
And it is Pellegrini who is expected to take up the hotseat, with bwin going 3/20 that the Chilean is the new manager at City.
The former Real Madrid boss has been lauded for his work at Villarreal, who he took to a second-place finish in La Liga and steered to the Champions League semi-finals in 2006, and Malaga, whose Champions League campaign was only ended by Borussia Dortmund at the quarter-final stage this season.
But with Pellegrini denying an agreement is in place and with Barcelona reportedly monitoring the situation with doubts over Tito Vilanova’s long term-health, there may yet be some value in the market.
Inevitably, Jose Mourinho, likely to be leaving Real Madrid in the summer, is 4/1 second favourite, with Rafa Benitez, also out of work next week when his interim role at Chelsea comes to a close, a 10/1 chance.
Carlo Ancelotti, a reported target for Real Madrid, is 20/1 to leave Paris Saint-Germain for Manchester, while Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers, who has been linked in the press with the City job in the past, is 33/1 to swap Anfield for the Etihad.
Swansea City’s Brian Laudrup and in-demand Dortmund boss Jurgen Klopp are also 33/1, with his opponent in this month’s Champions League final, Jupp Heynckes of Bayern Munich, at 40/1. Juventus manager Antonio Conte is 50/1, while you can get 80/1 on Mancini’s FA Cup conqueror Roberto Martinez taking the leap from Wigan.
All other managers are 100/1 or more, with notable names including Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger, Germany coach Joachim Low, Anzhi’s Guus Hiddink and Tottenham’s Andre Villas-Boas.