Pep Guardiola Announces He Will Leave Barcelona As Tito Vilanova Prepares To Take Control


Barcelona boss Pep Guardiola will step down as boss of the Spanish giants at the end of the season, after four years in charge.

Guardiola, the most successful manager in the history of Barcelona, will be succeeded by assistant boss Tito Vilanova.

As reported by BBC Sport, the 41 year-old confirmed he will not renew his one-year rolling contract, saying: “The reason is simple: four years is enough.”

Since being appointed as Frank Rijkaard's replacement in 2008, Guardiola has gone on to lead Barca to 13 trophies, but as he conceded to a packed room, the pressures of managing at the highest level have taken their toll on him.

“At the beginning of December I announced to the chairman that I was seeing the end of my era at Barcelona,” he continued.

“Time has taken its toll - I rise each day and don't feel the same. I am going with the understanding that I have done my duty.

"You can only recover by resting and getting away from everything. It would have been a bad idea to continue. Perhaps it would not have gone wrong but I have the perception that it would. It is my time to go.

"Now we are out of the two main competitions it is a good time to announce this. I did not want to continue with the confusion.”

The former Barcelona captain is believed to be taking a year's sabbatical from the game before he decides on his next career move.

The last week has been particularly difficult for Guardiola, who has seen his side knocked out of the Champions League to Chelsea, and effectively relinquished the league title to bitter rivals Real Madrid following Saturday's defeat in El Clasico.

Guardiola finished by praising his players, saying they were the real reason for the last four years of success.

While Vilanova was not considered to be in the running to replace Guardiola, it came as a surprise to learn of his appointment.

Barca sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta commented on his promotion to the role saying: “We've always said that if the team needs players, we look at home first. What do we have here at home? Tito.


"We chose Tito because he represents the idea and the image. He has commitment and personality."