Pep Guardiola is top of Bayern Munich's list to replace Niko Kovac next summer

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Could Pep Guardiola leave Manchester City?

It's a tough question. The legendary manager has experienced a whirlwind three seasons at the Etihad Stadium and is sitting pretty after winning the last two Premier League crowns.

However, there appears to be a changing of the guard as Liverpool pull away with an eight-point lead this season and City fans are becoming impatient for Champions League success.

It looks for all intents and purposes that Guardiola will see out the remaining 18 months of his contract and you can probably guarantee they'll be plenty of trophies along the way.

But whether or not Guardiola could be tempted away if the right offer came up is a different question entirely.

A return to Bayern?

Enter Bayern Munich. The Bavarians are actively on the hunt for a new manager after the sacking of Niko Kovac and might wait until the summer to make a permanent appointment.

It's rumoured that Arsene Wenger could inherit the reins for the remainder of the season, a la Jupp Heynckes in 2017-18, before a longer term coach put pen to paper.

Here's where Guardiola comes in, because German magazine SportBild are reporting that the City boss is heading their list of Kovac replacements for next summer.

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Guardiola unhappy at City?

The Bayern hierarchy are convinced that their former manager is unhappy in England and believe they can tempt him into returning just four years after he left.

It's also reported that Guardiola actually visited Bayern's training ground and the directors just a few months ago.

The 48-year-old still owns property in the city centre and his family felt settled in the German city, whereas it's claimed that they disliked Manchester and are now living back in Spain.

Paris Saint-Germain's Thomas Tuchel and Ajax's Erik ten Hag are also on Bayern's shortlist, but both are below Guardiola in the order of preference.

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GIVEMESPORT's Kobe Tong says

It might seem a wild rumour at first glance, but there's reason to take credence from SportBild's report.

Guardiola leaving City mid-season seems completely unfathomable, but a summer departure would be more than feasible and especially when you consider he's never stayed longer than four seasons at a club.

If he wins the Champions League, then it would be a fairytale note on which to leave and if he doesn't, then Guardiola will feel as though he's taken this City squad as far as it can go. 

But would Bayern be the right team for him? There are plenty of up and coming players to tickle Guardiola's fancy, trophies are guaranteed domestically and he should have the money to spend. 

FBL-GER-BAYERN-MUNICH-CELEBRATIONS

A completely new project would, on paper, seem preferable and perhaps reason to stay on at City for another season, but the Spaniard might feel as though he has unfinished business in Bavaria.

We'll leave you with this comment after exiting the club in 2016: "I will come back here, to Germany - maybe as a coach." That 'maybe' is enough for Bayern to at least try.

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