Friday, July 31, 2020 at
Manuel Pellegrini may leave Real Betis after less than a month, Spanish media assure Thursday evening. Although the coach from Chile signed a three-year commitment to the Spanish club earlier this month, an as-yet-unknown club from China is said to have placed ‘an extreme proposition’ with him. The financial conditions are such that Pellegrini is currently seriously considering the proposal, it seems.
The Chinese Super League is no unknown territory for Pellegrini, who stood for the selection of Hebei China Fortune between 2016 and 2018. The ex-trainer of Villarreal, Real Madrid and Manchester City, among others, subsequently worked for West Ham United. Antonio Cordón plays an important role in this matter. The technical director who was also appointed at Betis this month, still knows Pellegrini well from their joint period at Villarreal and the presence of the Chilean was a reason for the Spaniard to sign with Betis.
Until recently, Cordón worked for the Ecuadorian Football Association, just like Jordi Cruijff. The son of the late Johan Cruijff chose to resign as Ecuador national coach a week ago and according to the latest reports, the Dutchman is Cordón’s emergency plan if Pellegrini chooses to return to China.
Cruijff stepped up at the end of 2019 as a trainer of the Chinese Chongqing Dangdai Lifan. He worked in China for a year and a half and had his second job as a head coach, having previously worked for Maccabi Tel Aviv in Israel. He was also technical director there, as before at Cypriot AEK Larnaca. The former footballer of, among others, Barcelona and Manchester United has no experience with coaching in Spain.
Real Betis has had a disappointing season, despite the necessary investments in the selection. After tenth place in 2018/19, the top six, and therefore placement for European football, was the minimum goal, but the South Spaniards finished fifteenth in the past football year: only five points above the red line.