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Bayern Munich making plans for Pep Guardiola's exit

SoccerBy Kevin Palmer
Ancelotti lined up as Guardiola's replacement
Ancelotti lined up as Guardiola's replacement

Carlo Ancelotti is being lined up as a replacement for Bayern Munich coach Pep Guardiola, who is set to confirm he is will leave the German giants in the coming days.

Guardiola has been given until this weekend to confirm whether he intends to extend his stay at Bayern, with his current contract due to expire next summer.

The Bayern boss has confirmed that he will reveal his intentions for next season imminently, with reports in Spain suggesting he will confirm he is intent on a move to England's Premier League.

Manchester City have been strongly linked with a deal to recruit two-time Champions League winning coach Guardiola, while Manchester United and Chelsea are also believed to be keen to hire the 44-year-old tactician.

Bayern officials now appeared to be resigned to losing Guardiola and German sources suggest they have already sounded out three-time Champions League winning coach Ancelotti to replace him.

Former Chelsea manager Ancelotti has insisted he has no intention of returning to the game until next summer, as he takes a break following a triumphant and then turbulent spell in charge of Real Madrid.

News that Ancelotti is set to join Bayern may come as a blow to some Premier League clubs, with Manchester United and Chelsea heavily linked with a move for the Italian in recent weeks.

With Chelsea weighing up whether to replace beleaguered boss Jose Mourinho and United currently in the midst of a mini-crisis of their own as pressure mounts on boss Louis van Gaal, the lack of proven replacements will be a concern for the hierarchies at Stamford Bridge and Old Trafford.

Atletico Madrid boss Diego Simeone, Southampton manager Ronald Koeman and Tottenham’s Mauricio Pochettino are all being mentioned as possible contenders for the top jobs next summer, yet all three lack the gravitas of serial winners such as Mourinho and Van Gaal.

Ironically, Mourinho may emerge as a candidate for the United job if he is relieved of his duties by Chelsea and the Old Trafford club opt to replace Van Gaal a year before his contract is due to expire.