Historically, a football club’s success or otherwise was inextricably linked to their manager, who would retain full control over recruitment, tactics and the maintenance of both standards and cultural values.
Of course, some would argue that this remains largely true to this day, with iconic managers like Pep Guardiola and Jurgen Klopp having created successful sides in their own image and created bespoke blueprints for consistent attainment both at home and abroad.
However, modern football is far-removed from anything we’ve seen before, with most clubs now including a large team of strategically important employees including recruitment experts and sporting directors.
This should arguably make such clubs stronger and more stable, which is an interesting consideration given that Guardiola’s own contract at the Etihad is set to expire next summer. But could City really imagine life without Guardiola, or would they struggle to build on his immense legacy.
The Contract Situation
In reality, the garden is currently rosy at Manchester City, with the club just two points behind leaders Arsenal in the Premier League and already qualified as group winners for the Champions League round of 16.
In fact, the Citizens remain the current favourites for both competitions, and you can bet on sports with stake.com to back both of these outcomes.
At the same time, new striker Erling Haaland has scored an incredible 22 goals in just 16 games across all competitions so far this season, while the 6-3 thrashing of city neighbours United wowed supporters at the beginning of October.
However, the mere fact that Guardiola’s contract is set to expire in the summer continues to cast a shadow over the club, with no immediate solution in sight and speculation continuing about whether negotiations will persist until after the World Cup.
How Would City Fare Without Guardiola?
While City may well be one of the best run clubs in Europe, it’s inconceivable that they wouldn’t experience at least some disruption if the Spaniard did depart in the summer.
After all, Guardiola has won a staggering 267 of his 369 matches contested during his time in Manchester, losing just 53 and scoring an impressive 912 goals. Overall, Pep has a win percentage of 72.36%, while the same statistic for his overall career is even higher at 72.65.
In the Premier League alone, Pep has won more than 74% of his matches. This is considerably higher than even the legendary Sir Alex Ferguson (65%), although it should be noted that the Scotsman maintained this record over a much longer period of time.
These are quite simply phenomenal figures, which are head and shoulders ahead of any current or historical manager who has performed the role for any serious length of time.
Then there’s Guardiola’s mastery of his craft, with his philosophy underpinned by positional discipline, efficient pressing and the continual rotation of ball and players. While other coaches have adopted similar tactics over the years, few have achieved the same level of performance of success while using them.
With this in mind, it’s little wonder that fans are concerned about Guardiola’s current contract situation, as his departure would leave a seismic void for the club to fill next summer.