Who needs it? Pep Guardiola unlikely to take Chelsea job

Nov 26, 2012

The treatment of Roberto Di Matteo makes it less likely Guardiola will heed the Russian's overtures

IF ROMAN ABRAMOVICH thinks he can click his fingers - and open his wallet - and get the former Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola to run his Chelsea side next season, he has another think coming, according to weekend reports.

Guardiola, who is midway through a one-year sabbatical from football and enjoying himself in New York, will have found the Russian's "trigger-happy" sacking of Roberto Di Matteo a big turn-off, says the Mail on Sunday.

A source told the paper: "When he does return, Pep will want stability and the events of the past few days shows again that Chelsea are not a club that offer a manager time to build anything."

With some of the biggest clubs in the world keen to sign 41-year-old Guardiola, the treatment of Di Matteo "has made it less, not more, likely that he will listen to Abramovich's overtures", says the Mail.

Anyway, if Guardiola is going to come to an English Premier League side anytime soon, the job he has his eyes on is Alex Ferguson's at Manchester United, says The Sun.

Guardiola is said to be a friend of Fergie's and, according to the paper, the two men have met privately in New York - a story that rings true given that Ferguson is a regular visitor to the city, where he was last seen cheering on fellow Scot Andy Murray in the US Open.

The Sun quotes a source close to Guardiola saying: "The whole history of Manchester United, his relationship with Sir Alex and the way the club is run appeals to Pep.

"Right now I'd be astonished if he went to Chelsea. He really wants to wait for the United job even if it means extending his time out of the game."

The earliest Fergie is likely to leave Old Trafford is the end of this season, but he might fancy one more season before finally quitting the job he's held for 26 years.

If Man Utd doesn't work out, Guardiola would be welcome at Manchester City, Bayern Munich and AC Milan among others.

As The Guardian reported following Di Matteo's sacking last week, Guardiola left Barcelona "an exhausted and saddened man, talking about the need to rest and rekindle his enthusiasm for the game". He will not be budged from taking a full year off.

Unlike Rafa Benitez, who made it clear he was desperate for a club to manage when he agreed to take the Chelsea hot seat as interim manager, Guardiola is not chasing a job – it is the clubs who are chasing him. "It is they who must convince him as much as the other way round."

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