By Editor Wayne Veysey | Former Evening Standard, Press Association and Goal chief correspondent with 17 years experience of breaking big stories, including exclusives like this
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Manchester City have offered Pep Guardiola a deal that would make him the highest-paid manager in the world, Football Insider sources understand.
City are willing to pay the Spaniard £14.5million-a-year, equivalent to £280,000-a-week, in a bid to install him as their new manager next summer.
This is more than the £13.3million-a-year Jose Mourinho was on at Chelsea and tops Guardiola’s current £11.2million-a-year Bayern Munich deal.
As reported by Football Insider, Guardiola is poised to announce on Sunday that he is leaving Bayern, with Carlo Ancelotti set to replace him.
Guardiola, whose contract expires at the end of the season, has already informed the Bayern hierarchy of his decision to leave the club.
An announcement to confirm Guardiola is to quit will have major repercussions for Premier League clubs.
However, a City source has told Football Insider that there is growing confidence within the corridors of power that they are leading the race to capture the 44-year-old Spaniard.
The Abu Dhabi-owned club have pulled out all the stops to entice Guardiola even though Manuel Pellegrini signed a contract extension at the beginning of the season.
As revealed by Football Insider on Thursday, Guardiola has told Chelsea that he is not interested in becoming their permanent manager next summer.
The Spaniard has been sounded out by the Blues about his availability but has been put off by the rapid turnover of managers during the Roman Abramovich era.
Mourinho’s sacking early on Thursday afternoon is the 10th time Chelsea have dismissed their manager since 2003 and the second time the Portugese has been given his marching orders.
Guardiola, who has also been the subject of serious moves from Abramovich in the past, is the most in-demand manager in the world.
Guardiola took over at Bayern in 2013 after a year-long sabbatical and has guided the German giants to back-to-back Bundesliga titles.
City are the favourites to land Guardiola and are hopeful a deal can be formalised before there is a further stampede for the 44-year-old’s services. But Arsenal are also monitoring the former Barcelona manager’s availability.
Manchester United have distanced themselves from the possibility of moving for Guardiola, with the plan for Louis van Gaal to continue for the remaining 18 months of his contract despite the team’s recent wretched form.