Guardiola confirms Barca exit
Pep Guardiola's four-year stint as Barcelona boss will come to an end at the end of the season after he decided not to renew his contract.
Last Updated: 27/04/12 1:28pm
Pep Guardiola's four-year stint as Barcelona boss will come to an end at the end of the season after he decided not to renew his contract..
Sky Sports sources revealed on Thursday night that Guardiola had informed the club of his decision to leave, and the news was made official at a press conference on Friday when the manager made an emotional farewell speech.
Guardiola was left to consider his future after Tuesday's agonising elimination from the UEFA Champions League at the hands of Chelsea.
Barca had been hoping to become the first club to retain the trophy but were knocked out 3-2 on aggregate despite the Blues being reduced to ten men in the first half of the second leg at Camp Nou.
The loss to Chelsea completed a disappointing week for Barcelona after they had been beaten 2-1 at home by Real Madrid in El Clasico to effectively end their hopes of another Primera Liga title.
Guardiola will now step down in the summer, allowing the club to build for the future under new boss Tito Vilanova.
Vilanova has been promoted to the role after working closely with Guardiola, as Barca look for continuity.
At the press conference, president Sandro Rosell said: "We have called you today to announce that Pep Guardiola will not continue in charge of the team next season.
"Thank you Pep for all the happiness you have brought us and for bringing a
model of football that can never be questioned."
Guardiola now intends to take a break from the game after becoming tired, although he is sure to be in demand across Europe and is known to be a fan of the Premier League.
Guardiola has helped Barca win 13 trophies since replacing Frank Rijkaard at the helm in 2008, having previously spent time as coach of their B team.
He had already achieved legendary status with Barca as a player, having come through the youth ranks and spent much of his career with the club.