The two-year ban from European football which has been handed to Manchester City has left serious doubts about Pep Guardiola’s future at the Etihad Stadium.
The City has appealed the decision, and if they do not hear back by the end of August, they will be able to start the 2020/21 Champions League campaign.
Guardiola’s future may well be elsewhere if the appeal does not go their way. His side looks far from likely to defend their title in the league as Liverpool are now long odds-on favourites in the Premier League betting this season, though current disruptions may affect how this season as a whole plays out.
The City boss has delivered some silverware in the campaign in the form of the EFL Cup. He also has further opportunities to add to that in the FA Cup and Champions League.
If Guardiola does choose to leave City at the end of the current season, here is a look at four destinations the Spanish coach could end up at.
The Catalonian-born Guardiola is a legend at Barcelona. Not just from his playing spell at the Nou Camp between 1988 and 2001 but also because he coached one of their most successful-ever teams between 2008 and 2012.
Guardiola delivered two Champions League trophies during that spell as manager. He opted to leave his boyhood club to take on a new challenge in 2012.
With some instability in the coaching position at the Spanish club over the last few years, it would be no surprise if Guardiola “went back home” and took charge for a second time.
French champions PSG have been through a host of major names in European football over the last five years to help them win the Champions League but all have failed. A bid to bring Guardiola to Paris would surely be made if he announced he was leaving Manchester City.
PSG are not short of talent. Kylian Mbappe and Neymar are the two stars of their team so the Spaniard may see the project in France as an interesting one to pick up.
Spanish National Team
Guardiola made 47 appearances for the Spanish national team during his playing career. A venture into international management could be the next challenge for the highly successful domestic coach.
Spain has not won a major tournament since Euro 2012, and with a World Cup just two years away, it could be a good time for the City boss to have a go at international football. A lot may depend on how well current Spain manager Roberto Moreno does at Euro 2020.
After leaving Barcelona in 2012, Guardiola spent a one-year sabbatical in New York. The 49-year-old is thought to be a big fan of the United States so a spell in the MLS is a real possibility.
The MLS has been able to attract some big names in Europe to make the switch to the USA over the last decade. Being able to secure a head coach of Guardiola’s status would be a massive coup for the league.
New York, Miami and Los Angeles are possible destinations that Guardiola may see as attractive cities to live and work in during the next phase of his career.
For now, his focus will be helping Manchester City finish the season as strongly as they can before he makes a decision on his future.