Guardiola signs new Barca deal

Barcelona boss agrees a new contract with the Spanish champions taking him through to the end of next season.

    Guardiola's existing contract was set to expire in June 2011 [AFP]

    Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola has committed his future to the Spanish champions through the 2011-12 season, the club announced on Tuesday.

    His current deal was due to expire at the end of this campaign and although he had been holding out on agreeing a new contract there was no suggestion he planned to leave the club he joined as a 13-year-old.

    "FC Barcelona announces that it has reached an agreement with Josep Guardiola on extending his contractual relationship with the club for one more season, until June 30, 2012," Barca said on their website.

    "The formal signing of the new contract will take place in coming days," they added.

    Success story

    The 40-year-old former Barca and Spanish international midfielder has won eight of 10 trophies contested in just over two-and-a-half years in charge, including an unprecedented treble of Spanish league and cup and Champions League in his first season.

    They have also won all five "Clasicos" against Real Madrid, including handing their great rivals a 6-2 drubbing at their Bernabeu stadium in the Spanish capital and beating them 5-0 at the Nou Camp earlier this season.

    Barcelona failed to retain their Champions League title in 2010 after they were beaten in the semi-final by Italian champions Inter Milan, who were coached at the time by Jose Mourinho.

    Mourinho took over as coach of Barcelona's arch rivals Real Madrid just before the start of the season.

    Barcelona are currently seven points clear at the top of the Primera Division after 22 games this season and have won their last 16 league games, breaking a 50-year-old Spanish record set in the 1960-61 season by a Real Madrid side featuring Alfredo Di Stefano.

    At Barcelona Guardiola has some of the best players in the Spanish league at his disposal, including Spain's Xavi Hernandez and Argentina's two-time world player of the year Lionel Messi.

    Barcelona provided seven of the starting 11 players that secured Spain's first ever World Cup win as they beat Netherlands 1-0 in South Africa last year. 

    SOURCE: Agencies


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