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WhoScored: Zabaleta-Sterling a key battle

Tactics And Analysis 8 hours ago
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 Posted by ESPN Staff
May 14, 2008

Pearce backs Sven to stay at City

Stuart Pearce believes Sven-Goran Eriksson is the right manager to take Manchester City forward and continue the progress of the club.

Eriksson is currently in Thailand for the first leg of a post-season promotional tour to the Far East but it is widely tipped to be among his last duties under City owner Thaksin Shinawatra.

Pearce was dismissed a year ago under the previous regime at Eastlands after a 14th-placed finish in the Barclays Premier League and Eriksson guided them to ninth despite starting impressively and tailing off.

The current England Under-21 boss said: 'If you ask me if the club is going in the right direction with respect to some added finance from my time, the answer is '100% yes'.

'That's from an ex-manager of the club. It's difficult for me to talk about it but if you ask me whether I think the current manager is a good one, yes. If you ask me as a Manchester City supporter whether he should stay in charge, the answer is 'yes'.

'I don't know what direction the club is being taken in. What I do know is that they have a fantastic crop of good, young players - Michael Johnson, Joe Hart, Stephen Ireland, Micah Richards. The academy has just won the FA Youth Cup.

'They need to add to that and push forward. They have the right fella in charge to do that.'

After City's investment in the likes of Elano and Martin Petrov and their start to the season, there were hopes of qualifying for Europe. Ninth still represents an improvement on where they were a year ago.

'I would have been happy with a finish of ninth,' Pearce said. 'I'd say he has done a very good job. They were one win away from finishing fifth or six.

'I finished 14th the year before last on a tight budget. You have had to spend a few bob to rise the five places they have this season.'

Eriksson's treatment illustrates what Pearce sees as a problem in football over the expectation on managers.

'I do get disappointed with the direction football is going in, what with the turnover of managers so quickly,' Pearce added.

'That seems to be part and parcel of the football industry now. There is a bigger picture and a bit more patience bears fruit. Alex Ferguson and David Moyes have proved that.

'If I was in charge of a football club, I would make different decisions.

'It seems to be the way the football industry in general is going and I find it quite sad.

'People I respect greatly as managers can almost seem unemployable the next day if you listen to all the messages that come in front of your eyes and ears, which clearly isn't the case.'