Guardiola, heavily linked in recent weeks with Manchester City, Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal, told a press conference: “I need a new challenge and I want to use that chance to be a manager in England.
“I want to experience the atmosphere in England and I look forward to [working at] the stadiums there. I am 44 and it is the right time. There are offers but I haven’t signed for anyone yet. When I have a new club I will let everyone know.
“The atmosphere in the Bayern squad is super and I will do everything I can to keep it that way. I will give my absolute best until the end. If I was 60 or 65 I would have stayed, but I think I am too young. It was a dream, it is a dream. I am very grateful to Bayern for this huge opportunity.”
Guardiola also ruled out the prospect of trying to take any Bayern players with him to the Premier League, saying: “I will not take any players. They have to stay here.”
Guardiola, who took over from Jupp Heynckes in the summer of 2013 on a three-year contract and has won back-to-back Bundesliga titles, the DFB-Pokal, the Uefa Super Cup and the Fifa Club World Cup, previously worked with Manchester City’s chief executive, Ferran Soriano, and director of football, Txiki Begiristain, during his time at Barcelona.
Manuel Pellegrini recently denied that the speculation surrounding Guardiola’s availability had affected his City squad, saying: “If they are distracted by that sort of thing, they are not professionals, not top players.
“This sort of thing is a fact of life at big clubs, you must separate the present and the future for your work. All the most important teams in Europe have moments where the manager is going to be sacked. Sometimes the speculation is true, sometimes not, but you cannot let it affect you.”
This article was written by Guardian sport, for theguardian.com on Tuesday 5th January 2016 12.58 Europe/Londonguardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010