Man City’s Next Manager: Xabi Alonso, Michel Top Candidates to Replace Pep Guardiola if He Leaves

Man City’s Next Manager: Xabi Alonso, Michel Top Candidates to Replace Pep Guardiola if He Leaves

Joel Reyes
May 27, 2024 at 8:25 AM
In this article:
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Manchester City
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Manchester United
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FA Cup
  • Pep Guardiola reportedly is leaving Manchester City at the end of the 2024-25 season
  • He started managing the club in 2016 and has led them to plenty of championships
  • Xabi Alonso and Michel are among the leading candidates to replace the Spaniard

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Pep Guardiola's reign at Manchester City may soon be coming to an end.

Reports have surfaced that the Spanish coach will leave the reigning Premier League champions next summer when his contract expires.

Sports Brief looks at the leading candidates to replace Guardiola if his rumoured exit pushes through next year.

Pep Guardiola, Xabi Alonso, Michel, Manchester City, Bayer Leverkusen, Roberto De Zerbi, Julian Nagelsmann
Pep Guardiola celebrates Manchester City's fourth successive Premier League title; Xabi Alonso celebrates after winning the DFB Pokal. Images: Martin Rickett/ John MacDougall.
Source: Getty Images

Top candidates to replace Guardiola at City

1. Xabi Alonso

Alonso became the manager of choice for top clubs with coaching vacancies this season after leading Bayer Leverkusen to an incredible 2023-24 campaign.

He helped the German club end Bayern Munich's 11-year reign in the Bundesliga. They went unbeaten in the German top-flight this season, recording 28 wins, six draws, and no losses, finishing 17 points above second-placed VfB Stuttgart in the standings.

Leverkusen also won the DFB-Pokal to complete the league and cup double. They came so close to recording an unprecedented unbeaten treble this season, losing 3-0 in the final of the Europa League against Atalanta.

Alonso recently signed a one-year contract extension with Leverkusen, which will last until the end of the 2024-25 season, per Metro.

That is perfect timing for Manchester City, as Guardiola's contract with the club will also expire during that same period.

2. Michel

Michel is another top option for Manchester City to replace Guardiola if the latter decides to leave his post in 2025.

The Spaniard gained plenty of admirers this season after leading Girona to a third-place finish in La Liga. They finished with 81 points to clinch a spot in next season's Champions League.

Manchester City and Girona also have the same owners, meaning Michel moving to England to manage the Premier League isn't far-fetched at all.

3. Julian Nagelsmann

Nagelsmann is another option for Manchester City, though the former Bayern Munich boss is under contract with the German national team until the 2026 FIFA World Cup.

Many things could happen before that contract runs out, though. Germany's performance in the 2024 European Championship starting next month will determine whether he will remain Die Mannschaft's coach.

4. Roberto De Zerbi

De Zerbi is another intriguing option for Manchester City after Brighton let him go at the end of the 2023-24 season.

He may not be available anymore, though, once Guardiola's contract expires next year. Several top teams are also looking to fill their coaching vacancies before the 2024-25 season starts.

De Zerbi helped Brighton qualify for the knockout round of the 2023-24 Europa League season before Roma defeated them in the last 16, per Sky Sports.

Guardiola shoulders blame for FA Cup loss

Sports Brief recently reported on Guardiola's reaction to Manchester City's loss to Manchester United in the FA Cup final.

He pinpointed the tactical mistake he made during the final that cost City the match.

Guardiola shouldered the blame, saying his game plan was not good.

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Joel Reyes
Joel Reyes is a sports editor at with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of the Philippines. He has eight years of work experience in sports writing.
Pep Guardiola