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Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has signed a new long-term contract with the club, it was confirmed on Thursday.
The fresh terms will see Guardiola commit his future to City until 2021. The extension was revealed by the club’s official Twitter account:
Manchester City @ManCity
We’ve got 👏👏 Guardiola! #mancity https://t.co/JIpTiZB5rc
The former Barcelona and Bayern Munich boss moved to the Etihad Stadium in the summer of 2016 and endured an inconsistent first season as he sought to stamp his authority on the side. However, he excelled in the 2017-18 campaign.
After bringing in the likes of Kyle Walker, Bernardo Silva and Ederson in the summer, City have been a different beast.
In the Premier League, they finished 19 points clear of their nearest rivals Manchester United and reached a record total of 100 points. In February, Guardiola also clinched his first piece of silverware as City boss, winning the Carabao Cup against Arsenal.
While they won games for fun this term, what’s was so impressive about City under Guardiola is the style in which they’ve been doing so.
The brand of football played by City was spellbinding, with questions asked earlier in the campaign about whether they are the best the Premier League has ever seen.
The Sky Blues went on to set a multitude of records:
B/R Football @brfootball
Record breakers—@ManCity 🐬 https://t.co/x4hGDharU3
Guardiola deserves credit for that, as not only has he implemented the tactical framework, within that he’s been able to help vital players make improvements to their game. Indeed, the likes of Walker, John Stones, Leroy Sane and Raheem Sterling have made massive strides this term under his watch.
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Perhaps the most pertinent example is Kevin De Bruyne, who was in contention to be the Premier League Player of the Year but was pipped by Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah.
Sam Lee of Goal commented on how important the Belgian has become under his coach:
Sam Lee @Sammy_Goal
Remember about a year ago when plenty of us thought De Bruyne was struggling with Guardiola’s system? He *is* the system!
It’s understandable City have moved to tie Guardiola down to a new deal, and the fear among the rest of the Premier League will be that a dynasty is ushered in at the Etihad.
The challenge for Guardiola in the years to come at City will be maintaining the incredible standards that this team has set already this term. After all, the longest the coach has ever been in a management job for is four seasons with Barcelona.
All the tools are there for him to be a long-term success, as a number of crucial players are still on an upward trajectory in their careers. To have Guardiola overseeing that development for years to come is an exciting prospect for City supporters.