Chelsea link with Pellegrini adds pressure on Benitez
Jesus Martinez, agent of Manuel Pellegrini has added further pressure on Chelsea’s interim manager Rafael Benitez, claiming an intermediary representing the London club has sounded him out about the availability of the Malaga manager, though nothing is official at this stage.
“Manuel has a contract with Malaga. I think that in April and May we will be clear about what will happen with his future.
“Chelsea and other clubs have asked, but only through intermediaries, nothing official. Manuel would love to coach in the English Premier League, as he would in Germany, Italy and other important leagues.”
The 59-year-old, who has in contract with the La Liga club until 2015, led Malaga to fourth place last season and have taken them past the group stages of their maiden Champions League campaign this term.
Benitez, who is not assured of commitments beyond the current season, has failed to win the heart of the Stamford Bridge faithful after replacing Roberto Di Matteo in November and such comments would put him under immense pressure.
Chelsea’s trigger-happy owner Roman Abramovich wanted to sign Pep Guardiola but the former Barcelona manager has opted to join Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich in the summer. Also, Borussia Dortmund manager Jurgen Klopp has ruled him out of a possible switch to London, claiming money is not the tempting factor for him.
Meanwhile, the Blues will face Brentford FC in the fifth round FA Cup replay on Sunday where John Terry could be picked for the match, though Benitez has harboured concerns over his skipper’s long term regular availability due to his recurrent injury problems.