By Ed Osmond
Spaniard Pep Guardiola has signed a three-year contract to take over as Manchester City manager in July, the Premier League club said on Monday.
Manuel Pellegrini will leave the job on June 30 to make way for Guardiola, who joins after three seasons at Bayern Munich in Germany.
Guardiola, who won 14 titles with Barcelona in his four-year coaching spell, had turned down a contract extension at Bayern late last year after winning back-to-back league titles and being on course for a third straight Bundesliga crown under the Spaniard.
“Out of respect for Manuel Pellegrini and the players, the Club wishes to make its decision public to remove the unnecessary burden of speculation,” City said in a statement.
“Manuel, 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,” City said.
Chilean Pellegrini, who took over at City in 2013, said he had informed his players to avoid any speculation regarding his future.
“I finish here on June 30,” he said at the end of a news conference on Monday. “There’s been lots of speculation, nothing done behind me but I don’t think it is good to have the speculation so that is why I told the press and the players.”
Bayern CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge said last week the club would support Guardiola in his work until the last day at Bayern.