Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini has claimed that he will be the man to ring the changes at Manchester City this summer but won’t be changing a winning team against Southampton on Sunday.
“We will keep the team that played the last game because we want to win the last game in front of our fans and keep the same performance as in the last games.” said Pellegrini.
How many of those players will be in the team after the summer is will be under discussion once this season is finished.
He has admitted that James Milner, who is out of contract at City this summer but has a reported £165k per week contract on the table, will only tell City his plans after the Saints game is out of the way.
And Pellegrini refused to discuss possible transfer targets from other clubs such as Raheem Sterling of Liverpool.
Pellegrini confirmed that only Samir Nasri (groin) and Fernando (knock) would be missing for Sunday’s season finale at the Eithad against a Southampton side who were hopeful of a fifth place finish and qualification for the much-maligned Europa League.
The Chilean paid respects to Sunday’s opponents, being led by Dutchman Ronald Koeman, after a summer of turmoil in which many of their best players left.
He said: “Ronald Koeman is doing a good job especially as they sold so many players. To be fighting for the Europa League in his first season is an achievement.”
While it had been speculated that some of City’s Elite Development Squad could be promoted to Sundays first team squad Pellegrini dismissed the suggestion that City could experiment against Southampton having secured a second place finish.
One EDS player who the Chilean has been watching over is Nigerian striker Kelechi Iheanacho.
Signed last summer but injured for much of this year, Iheanacho is seen as a possible contender for a fast track to the first team squad in the future, especially if either or both of Stevan Jovetic and Edin Dzeko leave the club this summer.
But Pellegrini was adamant that he would be respecting Southampton and would instead savour the change to avenge the EDS team’s 4-0 defeat at Old Trafford on May 12.
“We will see tomorrow the squad for the under-21 game. I don’t think he will be involved because we have an important game against Man Utd.” said Pellegrini.