Roberto Mancini Addresses 'Verbal Agreement' Claims Amid Manchester United Links
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Italy manager Roberto Mancini has firmly denied he has agreed a deal with a Premier League club, following reports he is being considered for the Manchester United job.
The Telegraph claims Mancini has emerged as a surprised contender to succeed interim United manager Ralf Rangnick, who will move into a consultancy role at Old Trafford at the end of the season.
Mancini guided Italy to an unexpected triumph at Euro 2020 but is now facing huge pressure, having failed to secure automatic qualification for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
The Azzurri will instead face North Macedonia in a play-off semi-final next year, ahead of a potential winner-takes-all clash with either Portugal or Turkey, and Mancini insists his only focus is on the national side.
"A verbal agreement with a Premier League club? All false," Mancini told Gazzetta dello Sport.
"My only goal is to get to the World Cup and be able to win it.”
On Italy's World Cup hopes, Mancini added: "Things didn’t go so well in the qualifying round, but we have to accept that. We have to roll up our sleeves and start again.
"We still have a chance. Of course, the draw was not beautiful but we are the champions of Europe and we can win the first game and then play the final play-off."
Mancini knows Manchester well, having guided United’s rivals City to their first Premier League triumph in the 2011-12 campaign during a four-year spell at the Etihad.
PSG boss Mauricio Pochettino and Ajax manager Erik ten Hag have also been linked with the United vacancy, while some have predicted Rangnick could remain in charge permanently.
Ten Hag has hinted he would take the role if offered after admitting he's “ready” to leave the Netherlands in search of a new challenge.
He told de Volkskrant: "I think I'm ready for it. I would be happy to take on that challenge.
"But I'm not chasing it. If it turns out that that step will never come, I will not say that my coaching career has failed.
"But I think I have enough competences to take on that challenge."