Guardiola not ruling out future Serie A role despite false Juventus rumours

The Algeria international wanted out of Leicester on the back of a title triumph in 2016, but saw the Foxes prevent him from leaving for two years

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola has refused to rule out a move to Serie A in the future, though he has vehemently denied reports he came close to moving to Juventus over the summer.

Guardiola’s current deal at the Etihad Stadium expires in 2021 and there has often been speculation linking him with a new challenge.

The 48-year-old has never spent more than four seasons at one club during his managerial career, taking in trophy-laden spells at Barcelona, Bayern Munich and now Manchester City.

Guardiola had a brief spell in Italy during his playing career, making 71 appearances for Brescia and Roma before moving to Qatari side Al-Ahli in 2003.

He admits that the chance to return to the country and manage in another one of Europe’s major leagues appeals to him, but insists his focus remains with the Premier League champions for now.

“Maybe. Possibly, yes,” he told reporters when asked whether he could see himself managing in Serie A one day. “I had a great time in Italy, though I'm fine in England right now. But maybe. I'm still not that old, let's see."

There had been rumours that Guardiola was ready to quit Italy in order to succeed Massimiliano Allegri at Juventus over the summer.

Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri eventually took the role, and Guardiola made it clear to reporters that any story linking him with a move to Turin was false.

"You had the wrong information,” he added. “You had to do your job as a journalist better."

Guardiola was speaking after Manchester City’s 1-1 Champions League draw with Atalanta, which saw defender Kyle Walker go in goal and keep a clean sheet after Claudio Bravo had been sent off with 10 minutes remaining.

Bravo himself was a substitute for Ederson, who was forced off at half-time with a muscular injury.

The Brazilian is now doubtful for Sunday’s blockbuster clash with Premier League leaders Liverpool at Anfield.

Raheem Sterling gave City a first-half lead at the San Siro only for Mario Pasalic to equalise for Atalanta four minutes into the second half.

Despite being pegged back City are five points clear at the top of Group C and on course for a place in the knockout stages.