Who will want to follow in Guardiola’s footsteps at Man City?
Manchester City supporters will not want to consider it, or even admit that is a possibility, but the day will come when Pep Guardiola says his goodbyes at the Etihad Stadium. As things stand, a fond farewell is pencilled in for the summer of 2025.
By the time his current contract comes to a close, the highly-decorated Catalan coach will have spent nine years in English football. Given that he only took in four as manager of Barcelona and three with Bayern Munich, that is a serious show of commitment from a man who tends to suffer from itchy feet.
OFFICIAL: Pep Guardiola has extended his contract as Manchester City manager to 2025 😤 pic.twitter.com/EyPbwaMurK
— B/R Football (@brfootball) November 23, 2022
The expectation is that he will depart with more major honours tucked under his belt, with football tips continuing to side with City each and every time that they take to the field. It does not matter who they are playing, when or where, the Blues are more than a match for any domestic or continental rival.
The impressive progress made over recent years has Guardiola’s fingerprints all over it, with a tactical brain that introduced tiki-taka to the world ensuring that lofty standards are never allowed to dip too far.
Having got a serious taste for success during his time in the dugout, while being blessed to work with some of the finest talent that professional sport has ever seen, a man with La Liga, Bundesliga, Premier League and Champions League titles to his name is forever chasing down the next target.
Guardiola has never been one to rest on his laurels or indulge himself in triumphs of the past, with each passing victory and trophy consigned to the history books from pretty much the moment that any final whistle blows.
To maintain those levels, while following in the most illustrious of footsteps, will be a thankless task for whoever agrees to take on that challenge. City still have plenty of time in which to ensure that their next appointment is the right one, with Guardiola on hand to offer nuggets of advice.
For him, Vincent Kompany – a once talismanic captain on the blue half of Manchester – would be a natural successor after cutting his coaching teeth at Anderlecht and Burnley. Guardiola has said: “Vinny’s destiny to be manager of City is written in the stars. It’s going to happen, I don’t know when but it will happen. It’s my feeling, maybe I’m wrong. His work ethic, knowledge, what he’s done, he’s doing really well, knows the club, the environment, what our people need. The destiny is there.”
Vincent Kompany’s Burnley are on course to reach 100 points in the Championship this season 🔥 pic.twitter.com/07E4GSgBRP
— GOAL (@goal) January 20, 2023
Kompany would be a logical choice, particularly if he continues to impress at Turf Moor. He would, however, be picking up a baton put down by an all-time great, and that will place him under the brightest of spotlights from the moment that he waltzes back into the Etihad.
He would not be the first to take on such a challenge, with the likes of Sir Alex Ferguson and Arsene Wenger having bid farewell to prominent Premier League posts at Manchester United and Arsenal in the not too distant past. They could serve as warnings, though, to anybody considering an application for the role at City – with David Moyes and Unai Emery fluffing plenty of lines between him – and it is difficult to imagine that anybody, even Kompany, will be relishing the thought of stepping into Guardiola’s shoes.