By Mike Slane, Goal.com
Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has been sacked after three-and-a-half years with the Premier League club.
City's defeat to Wigan in the FA Cup final proved to be the last straw for the City owners, who said in a statement that the Italian had failed to achieve any of the team's targets for the season after leading the team to its first English title in 44 years last season.
"This has been a difficult decision for the owner, chairman and board to make and it is the outcome of a planned end of season review process that has been brought forward in light of recent speculation and out of respect for Roberto and his extensive contributions to the football club," read the statement on the team's official website posted late Monday night.
"Despite everyone’s best efforts, the club has failed to achieve any of its stated targets this year, with the exception of qualification for next season’s UEFA Champions League. This, combined with an identified need to develop a holistic approach to all aspects of football at the club, has meant that the decision has been taken to find a new manager for the 2013-14 season and beyond."
Assistant manager Brian Kidd will take interim coaching duties for the remaining two games of the season and the postseason tour to the United States, where the club will play Chelsea in St. Louis and New York City later this month.
The decision to fire Mancini comes exactly one year to the day since Sergio Aguero's dramatic late goal saw Mancini's side the Premier League title. The 48-year-old also won the FA Cup in 2011 after replacing Mark Hughes as the club's coach in December 2009.
“Roberto’s record speaks for itself and he has the respect and gratitude of Sheikh Mansour, myself and the board for all of his hard work and commitment over the last three and a half years," chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak said in a statement. "He has clearly also secured the love and respect of our fans. He has done as he promised and delivered silverware and success, breaking the Club’s 35-year trophy drought and securing the title in 2012."
Malaga coach Manuel Pellegrini is expected to be unveiled as his replacement at the Etihad Stadium, according to several reports. However, the 59-year-old has denied that he is set to become the new boss of one of the world's richest clubs.
"I deny here and now being the new coach of Manchester City, I haven't signed any agreement with anybody," Pelegrini said after Malaga's draw with Sevilla on Sunday.
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