Champions League: Guardiola to stay as Barcelona boss



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Posted Sunday, May 29, 2011 by BBC.com

Champions League: Guardiola to stay as Barcelona boss
Guardiola has led Barca to two Champions League titles in three years

Pep Guardiola wants to stay on as Barcelona coach after leading his team to a second Champions League title in three seasons.

Before Barcelona beat Manchester United 3-1 on Saturday at Wembley there had been speculation it might have been Guardiola's last game as coach.

"I've the intention to continue one more year and after we will see," said the 40-year-old Guardiola.

In February he extended his Barca contract until the end of next season.

Xavi Hernandez, Andres Iniesta and Lionel Messi - who scored Barcelona's crucial second goal and won the man-of-the-match award - shone as Barcelona powered to the Champions League title.

"My future will be very tough as I'll be at another club with other players, thinking 'where are these kinds of players?' added Guardiola.

"A coach depends on the players. Obviously, you have girls falling at your feet when you win, but that can change overnight."

Guardiola has won 10 titles - including two European Cups - in his three years in charge of the club he served as a player for 17 years.

Sir Alex Ferguson, the most decorated manager in English football history, has needed 25 years with United to win the same number of Champions League titles.

"I feel privileged," said the Catalan-born Guardiola. "The way we have won is what I am most proud of. We want to play football."

The former Barca midfielder also hailed Lionel Messi's impact, saying: "Lionel is the best player I have seen and probably the best I will ever see."

The performance was so comfortable that Guardiola was able to bring on regular captain Carles Puyol for the last few moments, giving the injury-hit defender the chance to play a part in a memorable triumph.

Despite coming on, Puyol handed his armband over to Eric Abidal - whose place in the team had been in doubt after he had surgery this season to remove a liver tumor - and the France defender lifted the famous trophy.

"Players are human beings," said Guardiola. "Carles has made a great gesture and it has made us stronger."

Meanwhile Barcelona's players will go to a Shakira concert in Barcelona on Sunday to celebrate their victory, Barcelona defender Gerard Pique - the Colombian pop star's boyfriend - said on Twitter.

"Champions!! Champions!! thank you so much!!" Pique wrote i on his Twitter account on Saturday.

"Tomorrow at Barcelona and then the players will go to @shakira concert in the Olympic Stadium!"



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