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May 24, 2013

Soriano: City demand a trophy a year

The pressure on whoever follows in the footsteps of deposed Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has intensified after the club revealed an ambition to secure five trophies in the next five years.

• Blog: New York City blues
• Hierro hails Pellegrini
• City not after Falcao or Neymar

City chief executive Ferran Soriano announced the ambitious goal, which includes claiming the Champions League title, as they faced Chelsea in a post-season friendly in the United States.

City won the first of two games to be played on American soil, beating their Premier League rivals 4-3.

Having parted company with Mancini after failing to win a trophy this season, City are heavily rumoured to be trying to tempt Malaga coach Manuel Pellegrini to the Etihad.

And if Soriano has his way, the Chilean will become one of the most successful coaches in the club's history.

"I think that next season is going to be much better - I am convinced about that," he told the Mirror.

"It doesn't mean we're going to win one or two titles. But, in the grand scheme of things, if we look at the next five years and I could plan now, I would say I want to win five trophies in the next five years.

"That may mean we win no trophies one year and two in another but, on average, I want one trophy or title a year.

"That's the Champions League, the Premier League or the FA Cup. I think it's a realistic aim, yes. But I'm talking about five years.

"If next year we don't win, but progress our football and get to the semi-finals of the Champions League, finish second in the Premier League and lose the FA Cup Final again, that will be fine.

"That's because we will have progressed in the way our football develops."

The former Barcelona vice-president and managing director said he hoped a foundation of local talent would see the club into a new era of success.

"Teams that have won consistently in the past have a core of players that are home-grown," he explained.

"I've seen it to the extreme in Barcelona, where we won the Champions League, with nine out of the 11 players in the team home-grown. And you've seen it at United.

"It's consistent. You can't win one year after the next if you don't have a core of players that have been playing together for a long time.

"What we also want is a football concept so that the basic way we play is shared by the whole organisation, from young teams all the way up to the first-team.

"We're asking the new manager to have close collaboration with the youth football and to work together to achieve this. This has a consequence. We maximise the chance to win.

"You can't go to the market every year and buy the most expensive players. That's not to say we won't be signing expensive players. We will.

"But the objective - the vision - is to have a team where at least half of the players will be 'City' players - someone like Joe Hart, who has been there a while. They love the club and can be the core of the squad.

"When a young boy or a marquee signing comes, he knows there are some people who are going to tell him: 'This is City, this is how we play, this is how we behave.'

"So the vision is that we will have at least half of the team at this core and we will be adding players every year as we need them.

"The players might come from other clubs, continents or cultures, but we have to have stability in the culture and the way we play."

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