Pep Guardiola keen to extend his stay at Manchester City

Pep Guardiola has said he would like to “stay longer” at Manchester City.

The City manager is in the final year of his contract at the Etihad Stadium and speculation over his future is likely to increase as the season goes on.

Victor Font, a candidate to be the next Barcelona president, has expressed a desire to take Guardiola back to the Nou Camp, where his past successes included two Champions League triumphs.

When asked about Font, Guardiola said at a press conference: “I am incredibly happy here. I’m delighted to be in Manchester and I hope I can do a good job this season to stay longer.”

City have had to deal with a host of injuries in the early part of the campaign, a problem Guardiola feels has been exacerbated by the shortened summer break and the intensity of the pandemic-affected calendar.

Other clubs have also been affected and Guardiola has urged the Premier League to consider reverting to allowing five substitutes, as they did in the closing stages of last season after lockdown.

Guardiola said: “Definitely they should, they should 100 per cent. It’s not about one club.

Sergio Aguero, second right,  has struggled with injury this season
Sergio Aguero, second right, has struggled with injury this season

“There are statistics that they don’t deny – that in the Premier League players have 47 per cent more muscular injuries than the previous season, due to no preparation for most of the teams and the amount of games.

“All the leagues – Germany, Spain, everywhere – (allow) five substitutions to protect the players, not to protect one team. Hopefully they can reconsider and do what the rest of the world does because we have to adjust to the pandemic situation and other things.

“The reality is completely different now to before. Intelligent people adjust to the situation in the world – football is about the players. We’ll see.”