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Soccer Extras: Guardiola open to staying longer; Dembele out for 10 weeks

November 30, 2019 19:10 IST

Guardiola open to staying longer at Manchester City

Pep Guardiola

IMAGE: Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola. Photograph: Andrew Yates/Reuters

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola said on Friday he was open to the idea of signing a new contract with the Premier League champions.

The 48-year-old Spaniard, whose team have twice won the league title plus the FA Cup and two League Cups since he joined in 2016, last year signed a contract extension through to 2021.

Asked about staying beyond his current deal, Guardiola was quoted by the BBC as saying: “I’m open (to the idea), yes. It is not about what the club wants or not. For me, I want to see my players and the reaction of my players and everything."

 

“It is not as simple as I want to extend. I want to see the club, I want to see the players, I want to see how we are still working together.

“That is the most important thing after five years together. You have to feel like we can do it together and enjoy to work together.”

The BBC said no talks had yet been held with City but Guardiola added: “I’m so comfortable working with this club.

“When you are (somewhere for) five years it depends on the results. We will see what happens this season and next season.”

Barca's Dembele out for 10 weeks with hamstring injury

Barcelona

IMAGE: Barcelona's Lionel Messi talks to Ousmane Dembele as he is down injured. Photograph: Albert Gea/Reuters

Barcelona’s France forward Ousmane Dembele has been ruled out for over two months with his third muscle injury of the season, the latest chapter in a career marred by repeated fitness troubles.

A statement from the Catalan club on Friday said Dembele, 22, had injured his right hamstring and would be sidelined for approximately 10 weeks.

The Frenchman was in tears as he hobbled off in the first half of Barca’s 3-1 win over Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League on Wednesday.

Dembele signed for Barcelona from Dortmund in 2017 for 105 million euros ($115.73 million) but his debut season was marred by a hamstring problem which required surgery and kept him out for more than five months.

He has made only five starts in all competitions this term and will miss next month’s ‘Clasico’ against Real Madrid plus the revamped Spanish Super Cup in Saudi Arabia in January.

Mourinho says he would not swap Spurs for any club now

Newly-appointed Tottenham Hotspur manager Jose Mourinho said he would not swap his job for any other club after rivals Arsenal sacked Unai Emery on Friday and began the search for a successor.

Asked if he might have been interested in the job at the Emirates had the vacancy occurred two weeks earlier, the Portuguese made clear there was no point in pursuing that line of questioning.

“It didn’t happen, happened now. I am so happy here that I couldn’t even think about the possibility to go to another place,” he told reporters ahead of Spurs’ home Premier League game against Bournemouth on Saturday.

“You can put now in front of me any club in the world and I would not move.”

British media suggested Arsenal were interested in Mourinho before Tottenham sacked Mauricio Pochettino and signed a man who is now, nine days later, the longest-serving Premier League manager in north London.

The Daily Mail reported that Arsenal’s head of football Raul Sanllehi had already lined up a deal for the Portuguese.

Mourinho said the sacking of any manager was sad news, something he had felt as a kid when his father was dismissed and through the ups and down of his own career, but Emery would bounce back.

“There is not one single manager that is sacked that I am happy with. I always feel the deja vu situation,” said Mourinho, who was shown the door in previous jobs with Chelsea and Manchester United.

“So I am sad for it, but that’s life. Unai is a fantastic coach. Not happy at Arsenal, obviously, but a fantastic coach with a proven record. With a bit of a rest, another big club will come for him and his career will be back on track."

“So no dramas mi amigo, keep going and you will get another club.”

Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe has been linked to Arsenal in the past, and is again seen as a candidate for Emery’s job, and Mourinho praised the Englishman for what he has achieved on the South Coast.

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