Departing Pellegrini eyes Euro berth

Swansea (United Kingdom) (AFP) - Manuel Pellegrini ends his reign as Manchester City manager on Sunday with a final opportunity to leave a legacy of Champions League football.

Pellegrini takes charge of City for the last time at Swansea before being replaced during the close-season by Bayern Munich boss Pep Guardiola.

Despite reaching the semi-finals of this season's Champions League, City faced the real threat of missing out on qualification for next season's competition after a run of just one win in their last four Premier League games -– including last Sunday's 2-2 draw with third placed Arsenal.

That opened the door for local rivals Manchester United to claim fourth place in the league and the final qualification place, until a 3-2 defeat at West Ham on Tuesday handed the initiative back to City.

A draw at Swansea will therefore be enough for Pellegrini to sign off with a place in Europe's elite club competition intact, to go with the 2014 Premier League title and the two League Cups he has delivered in his three years as City boss.

"You were all thinking we were out, but you must win all of your games, and every game is very difficult," Pellegrini said.

"After the game on Sunday I was disappointed, especially not winning in front of our own fans, but I was sure United had a difficult task.

"We played very well against Arsenal and deserved to qualify in that moment."

Since winning the Premier League in Pellegrini's first season in charge, City's domestic form has dipped with a second-placed finish last season followed by this season's struggle to stay in the top four.

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But former Real Madrid boss Pellegrini –- who says he will consider potential new job offers to stay in management from next week -– believes he has been a success at City.

"If you make a summary of the three seasons I was in charge here, we were the team that had the most points, the team that had the best performance from a manager," he said.

"We are also the team that in each of the three seasons scored the most goals. The goal difference is huge compared to all the other teams.

"It is very important to be the highest scoring team over the three seasons, and to always be in the Champions League, and win three titles.

"I'm happy but you must always think you can do it better."

Pellegrini's record will be tainted if his players fail to deliver the point they need on Sunday, but midfielder Fernando expects them to make the most of their reprieve.

"The fact is, with the players we have, we should never be in a situation where we are relying on other teams to make sure we finish in the top four," Fernando said.

"Now we have a second chance and we have to make sure we take it."

Swansea will not make it easy, however, as they look to complete their impressive end to the season with a fifth successive home win.

The Welsh club looked as though they may be dragged into the relegation fight but have responded so well under manager Francesco Guidolin that the Italian, who was appointed in January, has been awarded a new two-year contract with the Swans 11th in the table.

"Hopefully we can get a good result against Manchester City and then I will look forward to working with the squad during pre-season and getting to know them a little better," Guidolin said.

"I'm confident in myself and the results have helped me in the period since January. For that I have to thank the players and my staff.

"I know I'm not a famous manager so it's been important for me to have this possibility to work in the Premier League and I'm very proud."