Guardiola confirms he will leave Barca


Barcelona boss Pep Guardiola has confirmed he will leave the club at the end of the season, reports El Economista.

Guardiola is understood to have informed players and staff of the decision not to renew his one-year rolling contract at training on Friday morning – the first since Barca were knocked out of the Champions League by Chelsea on Tuesday night – and despite club President Sandro Rosell having tried to change his mind he will now take time out of the game to be with his family and recharge his batteries.

The 41-year-old will hope to go out in a blaze of glory after the final game of what for him has been an exhausting season, when his team takes on Athletic Bilbao in the final of the Copa del Rey in May. Rosell, however, now faces the task of replacing a man who has won 13 trophies since taking over at the Camp Nou in 2008, with Marcelo Bielsa, Laurent Blanc, Ernesto Valverde and Andres Villas-Boas early front-runners for the post.

A host of clubs are certain to try and tempt Guardiola out of his self-imposed sabbatical, particularly from England where Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich is a known admirer.

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