Despite a disappointing campaign – likely to end with the Premier League trophy returning to Old Trafford – Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini should not get the chop – according to City legend Joe Corrigan.
Speculation over the Italian’s future has never been far away this season – an early Champions League exit and inconsistent league form just two discussion points.
But former goalkeeper Corrigan – who played for City between 1967-1983 – thinks the current gaffer merits a prolonged stay past the summer.
“I think Mancini is definitely the right man for the job,” he told MM. “He needs to stay for the continuity at the club.
“He has won three trophies in five years, including the FA Cup, and followed that the next year with the championship. I can’t see any reason for him to go.
“Who would we would bring in? Pep Guardiola was the only one that would come close but he has gone to Bayern Munich.
“There is no point changing managers if there is no one better available.”
Although arguing against a swap at the top, 64-year-old Corrigan did however predict a change of playing personnel at the Etihad.
He added: “The owners and the manager will have a long hard look at it over the summer along with the chairman.
“There will have to be a major clear out before any future players come in.”
Last summer the Blues brought in Javier Garcia, Matija Nastasic, Maicon and Scott Sinclair.
Rivals Manchester United meanwhile splashed the cash on Dutch striker Robin van Persie, along with Shinji Kagawa, Nick Powell and Alexander Buttner.
And Corrigan, who racked up 592 Blues appearances – a City record for a goalkeeper – was in no doubt as to the difference between the sides this campaign.
“This season we have not been scoring the amount of goals that we did last season where we were scoring three or four on several occasions,” he added.
“Obviously I am not the manager. But Mancini brought in four players during last summer’s transfer window and they have not really matched up to the performances that came before them.
“Manchester United got van Persie. At the end of the day he has been the difference between the two sides and we have suffered for it.”
A disappointing defeat to Everton last weekend – a performance described by Corrigan as lacking passion – left the Blues 15 points behind United with nine games left.
But with Chelsea and Tottenham looking to hunt them down in the league, and an FA Cup semi-final against either Chelsea or United, there still remains much to play for.
Although winning the Football League Cup three times and the 1970 European Cup-Winners cup, Corrigan never lifted the FA Cup – losing to Tottenham in the 1981 final.
But he stressed the importance for the current crop of players of progressing to the final and adding to their 2011 victory.
“It will be a massive game against whoever wins the quarter-final replay,” he said.
“But we need to bring back some more silverware for our fans. It is vitally important that we win the FA Cup.
“Even though with the money that is available at City, the top notch players in Europe want to compete in the Champions League, win silverware and be challenging for the Championship.
“So to attract those players, City need to be doing those things.”
Meanwhile, Corrigan – who played for England nine times – believed Rio Ferdinand’s withdrawal from the national squad was right for both club and country.
He said: “I may be wrong but I think Sir Alex would have had a word in his ear.
“He has got to look at his future at Manchester United. He has made the right decision for his club.
“England have got some difficult fixtures coming up. With his rehabilitation back from injury he has made the right decision for England too.
“It also gives another of the young boys a chance to come in and show their metal for England. It is good to be bringing young blood into the England set-up.”
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