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11th Jun 2024

Pep Guardiola makes stance clear on return to former club

Harry Warner

Pep Guardiola

Many have speculated a return to one of Pep’s old stomping grounds

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has doused speculation of a return to Barcelona, a club he both played for and managed to success.

The 53-year-old is expected to leave Man City at the end of next season which has led to plenty of frantic guesswork suggesting where he may take his winning ways next.

However, after Pep spoke at a golf tournament in his native Catalonia it is unlikely to be Barcelona saying that “the door is closed. We’re getting old now.”

This statement comes as some surprise, with the three-times Champions League winning manager saying in January 2023 that “If I’m training here, wherever and Barcelona calls me, I’ll go to Barcelona, it’s my club.”

It would appear that the last 18 months have changed Pep’s mind on a return to the Camp Nou and for the time being Barcelona are only just getting started with new boss Hansi Flick.

The German is the latest in a string of managers to take up the mantle at the club, becoming the sixth coach to try their luck in the revolving door after Luis Enrique left in 2017.

Unfortunately for Arsenal fans Pep’s lack of enthusiasm to return to Barcelona might not be good news for them, with Mikel Arteta having links to the club as well as being previously connected with a move to the Camp Nou.

Trained under Guardiola, Arteta is one of his many students now in management and the Catalonian club might see the Gunners’ manager as the next best thing if Flick cannot make it stick at Barcelona.

Despite this Arteta has previously stated he is happy in North London with the Spaniard saying, “I still have a year in my contract, that’s a long time in football. The players are happy, the club is happy, no issues. I’m just focusing on the games and winning football matches and that’s the most important thing right now.”

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