Roberto Mancini to lay down roots in Manchester with long-term future in mind
Mancini's instant impact at Eastlands, both on and off the pitch, has earned admiration from senior figures close to Manchester City's owner Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed al Nahyan, who believe that the former Inter Milan coach has vindicated their decision to dismiss Hughes last month by reinvigorating the playing squad and reviving ambitions of a top four finish this season. Having signed a three-and-a-half year contract when succeeding Hughes, Mancini had suggested that his position would be reviewed following an initial six-month period at the end of the season. Related ArticlesMan City v Portsmouth: previewPortsmouth crisis deepensCity can stop the tauntsMan City open to offers for BenjaniMan City Transfer TalkGrant set to quit PortsmouthBut City have made it clear to the 45 year-old that they regard him as a central figure in their plans to take the club to a higher level and, having spent just over a month living in a city centre hotel, Mancini has informed chief executive Garry Cook that he now intends to lay down roots by acquiring a property in the city. Under Mancini, City have won six of their last eight games, with only an injury-time goal by Wayne Rooney during Wednesday's Carling Cup semi-final against Manchester United ending hopes of the club's first major cup final since 1981. But although the team's resurgence under Mancini has been noted by chairman Khaldoon al-Mubarak and Cook, the return to prominence of players who had been overlooked by Hughes, such as Martin Petrov, Javier Garrido and Micah Richards has been viewed as a more impressive feature of the manager's influence. Mancini, who continues to pursue Middlesbrough winger Adam Johnson, will receive comprehensive backing in the transfer market in the summer, although City now believe that last summer's £118m investment in the squad has removed the need for another large scale influx of players. Quality rather than quantity will be the blueprint. City face Portsmouth at Eastlands on Sunday with Mancini warning his players that the visitors will not be distracted by the financial problems that are currently engulfing the south coast club. Mancini said: 'It is a dangerous situation for us because the Portsmouth players will not be thinking about the club's situation when they are on the pitch. We must pay a lot of attention to this game because it is an important one after the United match.'
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