LONDON (Reuters) - Leicester City manager Nigel Pearson answered questions about his future on Monday with the sort of watertight defending sadly lacking from his bottom of the Premier League side.
"I'm going to disappoint you all now and I'm not going to speak about it," he told a news conference a day after the club rubbished widespread speculation that the boss had been dismissed.
"For reasons I don't want to talk about, I don't want to talk about it," Pearson added as reporters sought new ways of asking the same questions.
The manager had observed on Saturday, when he was seen grabbing visiting Crystal Palace midfielder James McArthur by the throat in a sideline spat, that "I'm more than capable of looking after myself". And so it proved on Monday.
"I'm not going to talk about it. The players have trained this morning and we're looking forward to the game against Arsenal," Pearson said, referring to Tuesday's match in north London.
"We've got a game tomorrow, it's important that my focus and the focus of the players is very much on what we can do tomorrow night rather than talk about something I'm not really prepared to talk about.
"I am prepared now to look forward to the next game. I can't see too much mileage in discussing yesterday."
Asked whether the owners had given him reassurances, after the club issued a statement on Sunday saying reports of his sacking were "inaccurate and without foundation", Pearson acknowledged there had been conversations.
What had been said, he was not saying.
"If I'd got things to say, I'd say it in the appropriate manner to the appropriate people," he explained.
"I don't think I've ever been in a position where I speak too openly about what goes on in internal workings. I've always had a very good working relationship with the owners and I'm sure will moving forward.
"The bottom line is that you are never going to have a situation at any football club where things are entirely going the way that you want all the time. We are currently at the bottom of the league, there is speculation. Unfortunately sometimes stories like this break."
Leicester have 17 points from 24 games and are four points adrift of the safety zone. They have won only two of their last 19 league matches and face Everton, leaders Chelsea and champions Manchester City after Arsenal.
Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Justin Palmer