Pep Guardiola says he is planning on staying at Manchester City for the long term because the club “gives the manager everything he needs”.
Guardiola, the former Barcelona and Bayern Munich head coach, arrived at City in 2016 and has won three Premier League titles, an FA Cup and four League Cups in five seasons.
The Spaniard could win his ninth major honour as City boss on Saturday when his side take on Chelsea in the Champions League final in Porto.
It is already the most time Guardiola has spent at any of his clubs, and the 49-year-old, who has two years to run on his deal after this season, says “the results will decide if I can stay longer”.
“The club gives the manager everything he needs”, said Guardiola, when asked why he has been able to remain at City for longer than his previous roles.
“Of course investment, I cannot deny that and everybody knows it, but not just that.
“I have friends in the hierarchy above me, and the players have the feeling that I’m the manager because they feel I’ve been supported by all the people [above me].
“Most importantly, apart from the players – because in five or six teams in England and Spain, they have top players as well – I feel comfortable with my staff, the backroom staff, I have everything. I can’t ask for more to do my job as best as I can do.
“It’s simple as that. We are in the same line, we take decisions together, we share the mistakes together, we share the good things all together and this is the point.
“When we lose, they don’t tell me that I’m responsible, we look to find a solution. I know as a manager that if we don’t win, they are going to fire me, but they are going to do it in a friendly way.
“This is the way we work here and this is why I extended the contract here by two years and after two more years. I feel incredibly comfortable working, not only with the players, but all the departments in the club.
“That’s why I decided to stay longer.”
‘It’s terrible leaving players out – a disaster’
City boast one of the best squads in Europe, but Guardiola knows that means having to leave key players out of his starting XI for Saturday’s Champions League final.
Raheem Sterling, who has not started in the Champions League since the last-16 first leg, is expected to be on the bench with Phil Foden’s electric form keeping him out of the team.
Guardiola admits he can do very little to console those who will not be included, especially those who have played such a key role throughout his tenure, but emphasised the opportunity for subs to make an impact from the bench.
“Terrible. It’s absolutely (a) disaster [telling players they will not start]. I advise you, don’t be a manager in your life,” he said.
“I don’t have any nice words to feel relief about the guys who won’t play, but my advice is to stick with the team. There are five or six substitutions and everybody has a chance.”
De Bruyne: We have learned from our mistakes
Kevin De Bruyne said “different year, same stuff” last season when City were eliminated in the Champions League quarter-finals by French club Lyon.
The Belgium international reached the semi-final in his first season with City under Manuel Pellegrini, but with Guardiola the club had never gone further than the final eight – until this year.
De Bruyne feels his frustrations from last August have been heard and the team have become more robust on big European nights, having learned lessons from their previous disappointments.
Asked about the differences from previous seasons, De Bruyne said: “The identity of the team is the same, but I think in the difficult moments we didn’t make too many mistakes.
“In the other years, in these types of games, we made one mistake too many and the other teams reacted to it by going ahead and we couldn’t get back.
“In games this year we didn’t concede the goals that we have done in previous years.”