Pep Guardiola says he won’t follow Jurgen Klopp out of the Premier League and hinted that he could extend his contract with Manchester City.
Klopp will leave Liverpool at the end of the season after winning the Premier League, Champions League, FA Cup, League Cup, Super Cup, and Club World Cup during nine years at Anfield.
In his first reaction to this news, Pep Guardiola said he will “sleep better” now his biggest rival Jurgen Klopp has announced his exit from Liverpool.
After beating Tottenham in the FA Cup on Friday, Guardiola was asked whether he also may leave the Premier League in the summer. Manchester City coach is under contract until 2025.
Guardiola said: “Do you want to sack me? (With a smile). I’m fine. There’s still one more year, I want to do it – and maybe I will extend.
“I still try to manage. We can’t do more than last season but what is important is one step at a time. Players have the feeling now that we can’t lose games otherwise Liverpool will leave [us] We have to go to Anfield and be close. FA Cup and Champions League are around the corner. It’s one step at a time but I judge if my team are alive based on every single day, which you don’t have the pleasure to see. When we returned from Abu Dhabi with two days of training, I said the team was there. Don’t tell me why but they are there. They argue with each other, they want to be there. The focus they have, the way that we warm up. how they talk, how they communicate, how they celebrate now, how they celebrated Newcastle.
He added: “Of course, we’re going to lose games. but I have the duty to see how we perform, not just the result. Of course, we want to win but in the last action if they make a transition and score, should we be angry? Yeah but what can I say to the team? We controlled them and made them suffer when, in every other game they created 10 or 15 changes. Cry for a few hours and tomorrow back to business. They have done it many times. I’m surprised a little bit by my players because after what we have done they are still there. New players are involved quickly. That made me feel so proud to be part of this club.”
Guardiola also said he like Klopp left Barcelona in 2012 because he was tired.
“Klopp loves the game but it is nine years in the same place, the demand is so high. Every moment you think I need to breathe,” he said.
“I didn’t speak with Jurgen but maybe he feels that. Take a break, take a step back and take a perspective on everything. I understand completely, I don’t want to compare myself with him but at Barcelona I had that feeling. I needed the time to find myself.”