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By ESPN Staff

Pellegrini: Stevan Jovetic is staying

Manchester City displayed their pre-season fitness with a smooth victory over Sporting Kansas City.

Manuel Pellegrini has insisted that Stevan Jovetic is staying at Manchester City and is a pivotal player for the Premier League champions.

- Mooney: Preseason a chance for City hopefuls

The Montenegro striker has been targeted by Inter Milan this summer but manager Pellegrini is determined to keep the 24-year-old.

Jovetic, who joined City from Fiorentina for 22 million pounds in 2013, only started two league games in an injury-hit first season at the Etihad Stadium, but Pellegrini is adamant the forward has a part to play this season.

"Stevan is working well with us," he told a news conference in Pittsburgh. "He is a very important player for our team. Maybe there are a lot of rumours about his future but Stevan will stay with us here."

Jovetic was City's fourth-choice forward at times last season but could feature more often as Alvaro Negredo will miss the opening months of the campaign with a broken bone in his foot.

City face AC Milan on Sunday in the International Champions Cup before taking on Liverpool and Olympiakos.

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