Man City confirm Pep Guardiola will replace Manuel Pellegrini
Manchester City have confirmed that Pep Guardiola will replace Manuel Pellegrini as the club's manager at the end of the season.
Guardiola had been widely expected to join City after he confirmed he is leaving Bayern Munich next summer, yet rumours persisted that he could be a target for Manchester United and Chelsea.
Yet both United and Chelsea have been keen to distance themselves from links with Guardiola in recent weeks, amid suggestions that a deal for the former Barcelona boss to join City has been in place for some time.
"I knew this one month ago," stated Pellegrini. "I wanted the speculation to end now.
"The club are not doing anything behind me. With clause the club or me can choose not to use that."
It may be surprising that Pellegrini has chosen this moment to confirm his departure, but it has allowed City to clear up the uncertainty over Guardiola’s imminent arrival at the club.
Within minutes of Pellegrini's comments, City released a statement confirming they have reached agreement with Guardiola which read:
"Manchester City can confirm that in recent weeks it has commenced and finalised contractual negotiations with Pep Guardiola to become MCFC head coach for the 16/17 EPL season onwards.The contract is for three years.
"These negotiations were a re-commencement of discussions that were curtailed in 2012.
"Out of respect for Manuel Pellegrini and the players, the club wishes to make its decision public to remove the unnecessary burden of speculation.
"Manuel Pellegrini, who is fully supportive of the decision to make this communication, is entirely focused on achieving his targets for the season ahead and retains the respect and commitment of all involved with the leadership of the club."