Wednesday 7 December 2016

Pep Guardiola's €60m Man City deal - With more big names to follow

Iconic Spaniard signs three-year deal – with more big names to come

Jason Burt

Published 02/02/2016 | 02:30

Barcelona players throw Pep Guardiola in the air after his final game in charge in 2012. Photo: Getty
Barcelona players throw Pep Guardiola in the air after his final game in charge in 2012. Photo: Getty

Having hired, by common consensus, the best manager in the world in Pep Guardiola, Manchester City are now planning an expensive overhaul of their squad.

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City confirmed yesterday, at the prompting of the now outgoing manager Manuel Pellegrini, that Guardiola is on his way having agreed a three-year contract which will pay him at least €20m-a-year. That is a €60m deal which will make Guardiola the highest-paid manager in the Premier League.

Pellegrini said he knew "a month ago" that he was losing his job to Guardiola and wanted to end the speculation.

There were suggestions that City had fought off late bids from both Manchester United and Chelsea for Guardiola but those claims were summarily dismissed by senior sources at both of those clubs.

City also revealed that the negotiations to hire Guardiola had been "a recommencement of discussions that were curtailed in 2012", at a time when Roberto Mancini was manager but just prior to the Spaniard's year-long sabbatical. Including that detail was to show that Pellegrini always knew he was second-choice to Guardiola and would make way if he became available.

City will consider whether Lionel Messi can be extracted from Barcelona, what Neymar's intentions also are, while there are obvious targets at Bayern in Thiago Alcantara and David Alaba. Juventus can expect a move for Paul Pogba, while Everton's John Stones could be the kind of ball-playing defender Guardiola will want.

Telegraph.co.uk

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