Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 14 December 2019

Bayern Munich want Pep Guardiola to become their next coach, according to reports in Germany

Bundesliga giants target Manchester City boss to replace Niko Kovac in the summer, despite Etihad contract that runs until 2021

 Pep Guardiola, coach of Manchester City, leaves the 2019 UEFA Elite Club Coaches Forum in Nyon, Switzerland, this week. EPA
 Pep Guardiola, coach of Manchester City, leaves the 2019 UEFA Elite Club Coaches Forum in Nyon, Switzerland, this week. EPA

Bayern Munich have targeted Manchester City's Pep Guardiola as their next manager, according to reports in Germany.

Guardiola's contract at the Etihad runs until 2021, but the Bundesliga giants are hoping to persuade him to return to Germany next summer, four years after he left, to replace Niko Kovac.

Thomas Tuchel, coach of Paris Saint-Germain, and Erik ten Hag, curently in charge of Ajax, are also being considered for the post at the Allianz Arena, but Guardiola appears to be the first choice, according to SportBild.

The German media reported that Guardiola visited Bayern's training ground and the club's directors a few months ago. He still owns a flat in Munich.

When he left the club he promised that he would return one day, saying: "I will come back here, to Germany - maybe as a coach."

Bayern president Uli Hoeness stressed they are looking for a "long-term solution" after Kovac was fired last week.

Guardiola was hugely successful in his three years in Bavaria, between 2013 and 2016. He won the Bundesliga every year and the DFB Cup in 2014 and 2016 – but was eliminated at the semi-final stage of the Champions League by Real Madrid (2014), Barcelona (2015) and Atletico Madrid (2016).

"My time in Munich won't be judged on not having won the Champions League," he said on departure. "Winning it is hard and defeats are part and parcel of the competition. Football always gives you another chance and people are surprised by the difficulty of the Champions League: with Bayern I got to three semi-finals and was knocked out in each.

"Bayern have won successive league titles so perhaps for them the Champions League seems more important."

Guardiola has won the Premier League title for the last two season with City, and last season they claimed the domestic double after beating Watford in the FA Cup final. But the Champions League has eluded him so far at the Etihad.

Updated: November 13, 2019 12:35 PM

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