Pep Guardiola 'to step down as Man City manager' despite offer of a new contract

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola will reportedly step down from his role at the Etihad Stadium (Image: GETTY)

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola will reportedly step down from his role at the Etihad Stadium when his contract comes to an end next summer. The 53-year-old became City boss in 2016 and has since overseen an unprecedented period of Premier League dominance.

Guardiola took one season to fully settle in at City as his team finished 15 points behind Premier League champions Chelsea in the 2016/17 campaign.

But he has gone on to lift the top-flight trophy six times in seven years and has also won the Carabao Cup on four occasions and the FA Cup twice.

He finally ended his Champions League pain as City manager last season as he won the competition at the seventh time of asking. He previously tasted glory in Europe’s top-tier club competition with Barcelona twice. And he went on to clinch the Club World Cup at the end of last year too.

Yet sources have told the Daily Mail that next season will be Guardiola’s final one in the Etihad Stadium dugout. He is into the final 12 months of his current contract.

City are prepared to offer him a new deal, but will give the Catalan space to make a final decision on his future when he is ready. It is claimed there has not been a final decision made on the manager’s future either way.

Read more… Arsenal target sets deadline to decide future as £94m star ‘close’ to agreement

Manchester City were defeated by Manchester United in the FA Cup final on Saturday (Image: GETTY)

Guardiola was quizzed by Sky Sports about the length of his tenure after leading City to the Premier League title following their 3-1 victory over West Ham a week ago. And the former midfielder admitted: “The reality is I am closer to leaving than staying.

“We have talked with the club – my feeling is that I want to stay now. I will stay next season and during the season we will talk. But eight or nine years – we will see.”

And pundit Jamie Redknapp joked that Guardiola’s former assistant and current Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta will be “in his office going ‘please leave’” after the Gunners narrowly missed out on winning their first Premier League title for two decades.

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Guardiola suffered a rare defeat in a high-stakes match on Saturday as his team were stunned 2-1 by Manchester United in the FA Cup final.

And after the showdown, Guardiola took responsibility for the result as he stated: “Congratulations to Man United. I think my gameplan in the first-half was not good. The second-half was much, much better, we were more intense, partly because we were 2-0 down and we didn’t have anything to lose.

“Because of my decisions [we didn’t perform in the first half], we were not in the right positions to attack them. It was my mistake, my gameplan was not good. The players know the reason why. Tactically, it was not good – I had a feeling it was not good. It didn’t work, as simple as that.”

Source: https://www.express.co.uk/sport/football/1903879/Pep-Guardiola-Man-City