Guardiola rubbishes Chelsea move rumours


LONDON (AFP) – Barcelona manager Pep Guardiola said Tuesday talk he’d leave the European champions for Chelsea was “fantasy”.

Guardiola has been reported to be the number one target for Chelsea’s Russian billionaire owner Roman Abramovich, who earlier this season sacked Andre Villas-Boas and installed former Blues midfielder Roberto di Matteo as caretaker boss until the end of the season.

But not even the suggestion of a £10 million-a-year contract appeared enough to sway the 41-year-old Guardiola, speaking on the eve of Barcelona’s Champions League semi-final first leg against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, downplayed all talk of a move, even though he has yet to sign a new contract with the Spanish giants.

“It is fantasy, it’s hypothetical,” he said. “I am coach of Barcelona now and they (Chelsea) have a good manager who is getting unbelievable results.

“It’s not useful for Chelsea or for Barcelona to talk about that. There is no time to talk about that.”

The fact Guardiola has yet to put pen to paper on a new Nou Camp contract has led to intense speculation on his future but, not for the first time this season, he insisted he was just concentrating on the match in front of him.

“I just want to focus on the game,” he said ahead of Wednesday’s clash in west London. “This is a dream come true, to be here ahead of this great game.

“I just want to make sure my players are focused on the game and can enjoy playing matches like that.”

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