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Friday, April 27, 2012

FOOTBALL : Pep Guardiola steps down as Barcelona manager

Pep Guardiola will step down as the Barcelona manager at the end of this season after deciding not to renew his rolling one-year contract.

The 41-year-old, who was appointed in 2008 and has led the Catalan club to 13 trophies, will handover to current assistant Tito Vilanova. It is understood Guardiola will take a year away from football after relinquishing his duties to Vilanova.

But after a stunning reign it has been a disappointing season this year for Barca, who look set to miss out to Real Madrid in La Liga and were knocked out of the Champions League by Chelsea just 3 days ago.

"The reason is simple: four years is enough," said Guardiola. "I'm drained and I need to fill up. The demand has been very high and a manager must be strong."

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