Munich // Pep Guardiola insists he will remain Bayern Munich’s coach next season amid reports he is set to take over at Manchester City when his current contract expires in June 2016.
“My future is: Wednesday free, Thursday training and, of course, next year to be here. That’s my future,” said Guardiola when asked about his plans yesterday.
Over the weekend, ex-England midfielder Paul Scholes claimed Guardiola will take over as City manager when his Bayern contract expires with current coach Manuel Pellegrini under severe pressure after a slump in form.
Guardiola’s Bayern are staring down the barrel of a Uefa Champions League exit at the quarter-final stage as they host Porto on Tuesday night needing to overturn a two-goal deficit after losing last week’s first leg 3-1 in Portugal.
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With a 12-point lead, Bayern can be confirmed as German league champions for the third season running on Saturday at home to Hertha Berlin.
But with their hopes of winning the treble of Bundesliga, European and German cup titles on a knife edge, Guardiola said winning only a single title this season would not be enough to satisfy Bayern.
“This is a big club, so you can’t say we are in a cosy situation,” said Guardiola, who won 14 titles in four years at Barcelona and has so far won four in nearly two years at Bayern.
“If you win, you’re a genius. If you lose you have lots of problems, but that’s the nature of my job.
“We have to take more risks after the first-leg result, but I am happy to be here in this stage of the competition.
“I know it won’t be easy, but I am 100 per cent optimistic that we’ll do it.
“We are just a few steps away (from winning) the German Cup and the German league, if we win on Saturday against Berlin, we’ll be champions.
“That impresses me when I see how many problems we have had.
“But I know which club I am at, it isn’t enough to win the Bundesliga and the cup.
“Only a treble is enough for a club like Real Madrid, Barcelona or Bayern, but I am proud to be here with these players.”
Striker Thomas Muller said Bayern Munich must resist any “kamikaze tactics” against Porto in their desperation to overturn their two-goal deficit.
Conceding an early goal would spell disaster for Bayern’s hopes of reaching the Champions League final in Berlin on June 6.
“We have to play smart,” Muller said. “Of course we feel the pressure, we have our backs to the wall, but having a challenge is a good thing for us.
“It is important to stay focused and score at least twice, but we can’t leave ourselves vulnerable to counter-attacks.
“I am positive. A 2-0 win at home against Porto wouldn’t be a miracle, would it?
“We’ll have the crowd behind us, but it’s down to us to score the goals on the pitch.”
Bayern captain Philipp Lahm will play after shaking off a stomach virus, which kept him out of Saturday’s 2-0 win at Hoffenheim.
Midfield star Bastian Schweinsteiger could feature having trained on Sunday after an ankle injury and flu, but winger Franck Ribery is highly doubtful with eight Bayern players, including top-scorer Arjen Robben, out injured.
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