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Trophies Are Pellegrini's Task

Manuel Pellegrini is expected to be confirmed as new Manchester City manager in the first week of June.

The Chilean will finish the Spanish league season with Malaga, then make his way to Manchester to begin a new chapter in his colourful career.

Pellegrini already knows what will be expected from him once he takes control at the Etihad: immediate success.

He has been forewarned by City’s chief executive, Ferran Soriano, that a trophy per season is the minimum requirement at the club.

Soriano suggests that City had stagnated under Roberto Mancini, and that a change was needed to ensure the club’s football evolves to the next level.

"I think that next season is going to be much better. I am convinced about that," Soriano said.

"It doesn't mean we are going to win one or two titles but in the grand scheme of things, if we look at the next five years and I could plan now, I would say I want to win five trophies in the next five years.

"That may mean we win no trophy one year and two in another but on average I want one title a year. That includes the Champions League, the Premier League or the FA Cup. Is it a realistic aim? I think it is, yes, but I am talking about five years.

"If next year we don't win but progress our football and get to the semi-finals of the Champions League, finish second in the Premier League and lose the FA Cup final again that will be fine.

"What we are asking the new manager to do is build a squad but also a football concept and a way of working that will last for the next 10 years. The manager has a shorter span [than that]. We are asking the manager to win this season, next season and every Sunday."

The bar has been set high for Pellegrini, but it appears he will be given time to scale the heights demanded of him.

Soriano is adamant that the sacking of Mancini was not a shotgun decision, but one that was carefully considered  in light of the way the first-team was performing on the field.

"This was a long-term decision taken with a lot of careful analysis," Soriano said.

"We would never fire or change the manager over one or two results. Once you go down the path of change you have to be very sure. Roberto Mancini did very good for the club. He changed the mentality from a club that was not winning to a winning club and that is very hard.

"In the last year I think it's fair to say that our football did not progress or evolve as we hoped. If you play good football you will win and we have a fantastic squad.

"The squad we have is capable of winning the Premier League and is not a squad that should be kicked out at the first group stage of the Champions League. You know, these things can happen – this is football and we all understand football. But we have better players than that."

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