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Pep Guardiola Hints About Leaving Barcelona

Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola this week hinted he could leave Barcelona at the end of next season.

Guardiola has enjoyed phenomenal as Barca manager, winning 10 trophies in 2 1/2 years including the La Liga for the past two seasons and the Champions League. But he has never signed a long-term contract with Barca, preferring to work off of one-year contract extensions.

“I think my time here at Barcelona is coming to an end,” said Guardiola in an interview with Italian television station Rai. “I’m happy here but when you are at a club like this for a long time it’s not possible to stay long-term. “Next year will be my fourth consecutive as Barca coach. A club like this must have a lot of courage to keep a coach for all this time because players tire of coaches and vice versa.”

Guardiola current contract expires in June 2012, so the media will be in a frenzy about where Guardiola will go next.

Inter Milan president Massimo Moratti has long expressed his admiration for Guardiola, but with Leonardo just hired, that avenue would seem to be closed at the moment.

For a year or so they have been persistent rumors linking Guardiola with the Manchester United job when Alex Ferguson retires. The 18-month timeframe would fit that scenario well.