Manuel Pellegrini talks about returning to Spain, and opines on Messi-Ronaldo battle


Manuel Pellegrini can certainly take pride of the Real Madrid side he had managed in his career back in 2009-10 season.

The Chilean spent the season at Santiago Bernabeu following a five year coaching spell at Villarreal, but was sacked later on as he failed to deliver any trophy. The 63 year old manager has made it clear that he will not be going back to Real Madrid side ever and claimed that the conditions were different there during his coaching career.

He had spoken out about the difficulties of working with Florentino Perez in past. The Real Madrid president had spent too much on Cristiano Ronaldo, Kaka, Karim Benzema and Xabi Alonso without consulting the manager in building the squad.

Though the Chillean has turned out going back to Real Madrid, he stated that he was proud of the performances under his managerial career at Bernabeu, as they had finished second in the league with a massive club-record of 96 points next to the other Spanish Giant Barcellona (99 points).

He told, “I would have liked to have won titles. We had an amazing season, though Cristiano Ronaldo was out for three months. I would have liked to become champions but I would not have wanted to continue under the conditions as they were.”

“I had no interest in continuing with Real Madrid in the way that we were working. Going back is never something I have in mind. From a personal perspective, I try never to go back to a club where I have already coached. I like new experiences. It’s one of the reasons I went to China”, added Pellegrini.

The former Manchester City manager has mentioned he had never expected to be sacked from the club, but he insisted that the expectations on him were huge. “Real Madrid will always be a source of pride. We had a very difficult year, where a huge amount was expected of me, but I was very happy when I left because there was a survey on whether I should continue or not and 75 per cent of the fans said that I had to carry on.”

Ronaldo had managed a total of 33 goals in all competitions in his first season at Real Madrid following his move from Manchester United despite being out of field due to ankle injury. Pellegrini has claimed it was clear from the very first day that the Portuguese star will definitely become one of the greatest Real Madrid legends. “I had no doubt that he would become what he is today”, he said. “One of the great things we did was to get 96 points in a campaign with Cristiano injured for three months.”

The Chillean believes only Lionel Messi can stop him from winning Ballon d’Or this year, “I think it (the Ballon d’Or) has to be between Cristiano and Messi because they are the only ones who have made a difference. You can’t compare them.”

The 63 year old, who has been appointed as the manager of Hebei China Fortune in August after leaving Manchester City said that he cannot rule out an offer from Barcellona. “I would be happy to go back to Spain at the right moment”, he added. “There’s nobody who wouldn’t like to coach there (at Barca), but for now I’m focused on China.”


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Photo by joshjdss