Manuel Pellegrini

Manuel Pellegrini
Manuel Pellegrini
Manuel Pellegrini(2).jpg
Personal information
Full name Manuel Luis Pellegrini Ripamonti
Date of birth 16 September 1953 (1953-09-16) (age 58)
Place of birth Santiago, Chile
Height 1.85 m (6 ft 1 in)
Playing position Centre back
Club information
Current club Málaga (manager)
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1973–1986 Universidad Chile 451 (1)
National team
1986–1987 Chile 1 (0)
Teams managed
1988–1989 Universidad Chile
1990 Palestino
1991 Chile U20
1991–1992 Palestino
1992–1993 O'Higgins
1994–1996 Universidad Católica
1998 Palestino
1999–2000 LDU Quito
2001–2002 San Lorenzo
2002–2003 River Plate
2004–2009 Villarreal
2009–2010 Real Madrid
2010– Málaga
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).

Manuel Luis Pellegrini Ripamonti (born 16 September 1953 in Santiago, Chile) is a Chilean manager and former footballer. His current club is La Liga side Málaga CF.


Club career

Born in Santiago to Italian ancestors, Pellegrini attended the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile in Santiago,[1] where he graduated as a civil engineer in 1979.

As a footballer, he played his entire career for Club Universidad de Chile, making a total of 451 appearances, scoring 1 goal.

Managerial career

As a coach, he has managed teams mostly in Spain, Argentina and Chile. San Lorenzo de Almagro obtained their first international title while Pellegrini was manager.


He started coaching Universidad de Chile during the 1988 season, in which the team was relegated to Second Division.[2]

In 1990 Arturo Salah was appointed as the manager of the Chilean national football team, and he hired Pellegrini as his technical assistant, and manager of the sub-20 team.[2]

He then coached to C.D. Palestino (1990–1992) and C.D. O'Higgins (1992–1993).[3] In 1993 he became coach of Universidad Catolica, one of the most popular football clubs from Chile, where he had an amazing team with players such as Alberto Acosta and Nestor Gorosito, but he could only finish as runner-up during 1994 and 1995 seasons.

LDU Quito

Pellegrini coached Ecuadorian club LDU Quito to a national title in 1999, starting a tradition of coaches that followed him to the Ecuadorian team. He had a good presentation in Copa Libertadores with the team that put him in the eye of GMs of other South American teams.

San Lorenzo

The years with Universidad Catolica were fundamental in his career as Nestor Gorosito, an Icon of San Lorenzo of Argentina, would later on recommend Pellegrini to the team and his recommendation would reap rewards when the Chilean coach led Los Cuervos to the 2001 Clausura title and the Copa Mercosur, South America's UEFA Cup equivalent.

River Plate

Pellegrini secured the Clausura championships at Los Milionarios (2003) in which he utilised the talents of Andres D'Alessandro, one of many Argentine playmakers to have been likened to Diego Maradona. However his sale to Vfl Wolfsburg proved a tough hurdle for Pellegrini to overcome and his side struggled to defend their status as Argentine champions in the 2003 Torneo Apertura. He quit his post at the end of the campaign.


Pellegrini took over the managerial duties of Villarreal CF on 1 July 2004. In his first season in charge of the club, Villarreal qualified for the Champions League after finishing third in the league and reached the quarter-finals of the UEFA Cup. The following season Villarreal reached the semi-finals of the UEFA Champions League 2005-06, losing to Arsenal. Villarreal eventually finished seventh in La Liga that year. The following two seasons featured Villarreal finishing in both 5th and 2nd place in the league, the latter being historic for the club. Pellegrini led "The Yellow Submarines" to the Champions league knockout stages, where they drew Arsenal once again in the quarter-finals, losing out 4–1 on aggregate.

According to percentage of points gained, Pellegrini is the second most successful South American club manager in La Liga within the last 25 years, coming after Vanderlei Luxemburgo.[4]

At the end of 2007, Villarreal offered him an extended contract until 2011. On 31 May 2009, after the last La Liga match for Villareal, Pellegrini said "nobody from Real Madrid has spoken with me. I have a contract with Villarreal, we finished the league today, and tomorrow we go on holiday", after being inquired by the press.[5] On 1 June 2009, Villareal executive announced that Pellegrini would no longer continue at the club. The Valencian club executive specified that if Real Madrid wanted to sign the Chilean coach, they would have to pay Pellegrini's 4 million euros termination clause.[6]

Real Madrid

On 2 June 2009, Pellegrini was officially appointed as manager of Real Madrid, signing a two–year contract. On being presented at the presidential balcony of the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium he said: "Hard to say in a few words the excitement and pride that one feels for having been chosen to direct perhaps the most important club in the world."[7] He joined Real Madrid as the first manager in Florentino Pérez's second stint as Real Madrid president. After a few days, Pellegrini scouted Kaká from AC Milan saying "If we want to win the Champions League and be the best team in the world, we need the best players in the world".[8] They later bought Cristiano Ronaldo for £80million from Manchester United later that transfer window, and Karim Benzema from Olympique Lyonnais for £30million and Xabi alonso for £30 million. It was the most money Real Madrid had spent in the transfer market all four players cost around £200 million combined.

On 20 July 2009, Pellegrini directed his first match for the club against Irish side Shamrock Rovers in a friendly match. Real Madrid won the game by a low 1-0 score, with a solitary goal by Karim Benzema in the 87th minute. The club's president Florentino Pérez criticized the team's style of play in this match and the physical exhaustion of the players. During July, Pellegrini disputed his first cup for the club as manager, the Peace Cup 2009. The club finished as semifinalist in the tournament, being eliminated by Juventus in a 2–1 loss. On 29 August, Real Madrid won 3–2 at Deportivo La Coruña in Pellegrini's first La Liga game as manager.

On 27 October 2009, the club was eliminated from the Copa del Rey during the Round of 16 by the modest Segunda División B club AD Alcorcón with a 4–1 aggregate loss. The newspaper Diario Marca named this match Alcorconazo. Shortly after, this newspaper made many teasing references to Pellegrini and also he endangered his continuity at the club. On 10 March 2010 he suffered a second hit, being eliminated from the Champions League by Olympique Lyonnais in the Round of 16 with a 2–1 aggregate loss. Florentino Pérez issued an ultimatum to Pellegrini after this defeat, warning him that he would be fired if he did not win the league.[9]

Pellegrini's Real Madrid side achieved a record 96 points in La Liga, being the highest points total that Real Madrid has achieved in a La Liga season, but still came in runner-up, finishing behind their arch rival Barcelona who had 99 points. There were many rumors of the coach's departure during the summer of 2010, but the club's directors did not confirm anything at the time. On 26 May 2010, Real Madrid's directors announced that Pellegrini was being sacked by the club, to be replaced by José Mourinho. But that they would have kept him, if the opportunity to hire Mourinho had not risen. [10]


After being released by Real Madrid, on 22 July 2010, he received an offer from the Mexico national football team, their coach Javier Aguirre having resigned following the FIFA World Cup 2010 quarter-finals in South Africa.[11] He declined this offer, but shortly after Premier League side Liverpool said they would be interested in hiring Pellegrini to manage the club in the next season.[12] However, Pellegrini eventually signed for La Liga side Málaga in a three-year deal, their coach Jesualdo Ferreira having been fired. On 5 November, he was officially presented as the new coach of Málaga during a press conference together with the club's owner Abdullah bin Nasser Al Thani.[13] On 14 November 2010, he made his Málaga debut as coach against Levante in a 1−0 home victory at La Rosaleda Stadium.[14]



Universidad Católica
LDU Quito
San Lorenzo
River Plate
  • Primera División: 2003 Clausura


As of 21 May 2011
Team Nat From To Record
P W D L Win %
San Lorenzo Argentina 2001 2002 &1000000000000005000000050 &1000000000000002100000021 &1000000000000001700000017 &1000000000000001200000012 &1000000000000004200000042.00
River Plate Argentina 2002 2003 &1000000000000005300000053 &1000000000000003500000035 &100000000000000070000007 &1000000000000001100000011 &1000000000000006604000066.04
Villarreal Spain 1 July 2004 31 May 2009 &10000000000000259000000259 &10000000000000123000000123 &1000000000000007200000072 &1000000000000006400000064 &1000000000000004749000047.49
Real Madrid Spain 2 June 2009 26 May 2010 &1000000000000004800000048 &1000000000000003600000036 &100000000000000050000005 &100000000000000070000007 &1000000000000007500000075.00
Málaga Spain 5 November 2010 Present &1000000000000003200000032 &1000000000000001200000012 &100000000000000060000006 &1000000000000001400000014 &1000000000000003750000037.50
Total &10000000000000444000000444 &10000000000000227000000227 &10000000000000107000000107 &10000000000000108000000108 &1000000000000005113000051.13


  1. ^
  2. ^ a b (Spanish) Pellegrini visto desde Chile. www.jugadoresdefú
  3. ^ (Spanish) Pellegrini. madridadas Blog Real Madrid.
  4. ^ (Spanish)
  5. ^ "Pellegrini denies Madrid talks". USA Today. May 30, 2009. Retrieved May 12, 2010. 
  6. ^ Pellegrini neuer Real-Coach (German)
  7. ^ "Real Madrid appoint Manuel Pellegrini as head coach". Sofia Echo. 2009-06-02. Retrieved 2009-06-02. 
  8. ^ "Real appoint Pellegrini as coach". BBC Sport. 2009-06-01. Retrieved 2009-06-02. 
  9. ^ "Manuel Pellegrini's nightmare becomes Real as Madrid begin blame game". (The Guardian). 2010-03-10. Retrieved 2010-03-11. 
  10. ^ "Real Madrid clear the way for Jose Mourinho". BBC Sport (BBC). 2010-05-26. Retrieved 2010-06-17. 
  11. ^ "Former Real Madrid Coach Manuel Pellegrini Has Mexico Offer". (Goal). 2010-05-26. Retrieved 2011-02-05. 
  12. ^ "Manuel Pellegrini's Agent Confirms Liverpool Talks". (Goal). 2010-06-18. Retrieved 2011-02-05. 
  13. ^ "Manuel Pellegrini agrees to coach Malaga in La Liga coup". ESPN. Retrieved 2010-11-05. 
  14. ^ "Manuel Pellegrini continued his winning start as new coach of Malaga by beating Levante 1-0 in his league debut". ESPN. Retrieved 2010-11-05. 

External links

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