Barcelona primed for Pep Guardiola Man City exit over contract break clause - EXCLUSIVE

EXCLUSIVE: Barcelona are keeping tabs on Pep Guardiola and will look to bring him back to the Nou Camp if he quits Manchester City this summer.


Posted Sunday, December 15, 2019 by Express.co.uk

Barcelona primed for Pep Guardiola Man City exit over contract break clause - EXCLUSIVE
Barcelona primed for Pep Guardiola Man City exit over contract break clause - EXCLUSIVE (Image: GETTY)

Barcelona are waiting in the wings if Pep Guardiola decides to leave Premier League champions Manchester City at the end of the season. Guardiola could next summer activate a break clause in his contract that runs until the end of next season if certain conditions are met.

Guardiola and his City side have struggled this season, and he appears to have run out of ideas on how to catch runaway Premier League leaders Liverpool.

The man who has won titles in Spain, Germany and England is weighing up his options, but his wife Cristina returned to Barcelona with one of their three children last summer.

Mrs Guardiola owns a successful fashion company in Catalonia and was finding it difficult running it from Manchester where the family have been based for three years.

Barcelona swept all before them in the four years that Guardiola spent at the helm before quitting to spend a year out of the game and then moving to Bayern Munich.

Barcelona primed for Pep Guardiola Man City exit over contract break clause - EXCLUSIVE
Barcelona primed for Pep Guardiola Man City exit over contract break clause - EXCLUSIVE (Image: GETTY)

Even though Ernesto Valverde’s side are top of the La Liga table from bitter rivals Real Madrid on goal difference, they crave a return to the success they had under Guardiola.

They haven’t won the Champions League since 2015 and would welcome Guardiola back with open arms if he does decide to break City’s hearts to leave.

City are already eying up Mauricio Pochettino if they need to replace Guardiola, who has been grooming Mikel Arteta as his successor, though he is on Arsenal’s wanted list to replace Unai Emery.

Discussing reports he could quit City in the summer of 2020, the Catalan said recently: “No. It is not true. I spoke about that a few weeks ago, about my intentions for the club.”

Barcelona primed for Pep Guardiola Man City exit over contract break clause - EXCLUSIVE
Barcelona primed for Pep Guardiola Man City exit over contract break clause - EXCLUSIVE (Image: GETTY)

Barcelona primed for Pep Guardiola Man City exit over contract break clause - EXCLUSIVE
Barcelona primed for Pep Guardiola Man City exit over contract break clause - EXCLUSIVE (Image: GETTY)

He has repeatedly shut down suggestions he could leave the Etihad throughout the current campaign and added: “I want to stay, I don’t have any reasons to move.

"I am incredibly satisfied to work with this club, with these players, and if the people think I am going to resign for these results and being nine points behind [the leaders Liverpool], the people do not know me.

"I like to have this challenge, I love to be in this position. If the club wants [me] next season I want to be here 100 per cent.

"I want to live in this city because I know lovely people here and I want to work and live with them and I want to be here.”

Barcelona primed for Pep Guardiola Man City exit over contract break clause - EXCLUSIVE
Barcelona primed for Pep Guardiola Man City exit over contract break clause - EXCLUSIVE (Image: GETTY)

Guardiola has even since suggested he could extend his current City contract, with his existing deal expiring in 2021.

"I'm so comfortable working with this club,” he explained.

"When you are [somewhere for] five years it depends on the results. We will see what happens this season and next season.

"I'm open [to a new contract], yes. It is not about what the club wants or not. For me, I want to see my players and the reaction of my players and everything.

"It is not as simple as I want to extend. I want to see the club, I want to see the players, I want to see how we are still working together.

"That is the most important thing after five years together. You have to feel like we can do it together and enjoy to work together."

City face Arsenal on Sunday at 4.30pm at the Emirates, looking to narrow a 17-point gap to league leaders Liverpool.

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