Ferdinand raises concerns over Guardiola with Sir Alex Ferguson comparison

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola is in the last year of his contract with the club and he has been linked with a return to Barcelona.

The 49-year-old recently addressed his future, telling reporters: "I am incredibly happy here. I'm delighted to be in Manchester and I hope I can do a good job this season to stay longer."

However, as his contract continues to run down, speculation about his future at the club will continue and Rio Ferdinand has given his thoughts on the situation.

Speaking on BT Sport ahead of City's game against Sheffield United, Ferdinand was asked what effect the uncertainty could have on the players.

"I was never really in that position as a player, obviously Sir Alex Ferguson was always fully committed and wore his heart on his sleeve in that respect," Ferdinand said.

"But Pep is a different animal, a different character and what is more important is what he is relaying to the players. I think if he's speaking to the players and he's filling them with confidence, then it's okay.

"But the big problem with the club in the wider picture will be recruitment because if they're talking to potential players that they're trying to get hold of in January or the following window, if I'm that player I'm saying 'I'm only coming if Pep's there' or 'I want to know who's going to be next in charge before I make my decision and commit'.

"The bigger picture is probably the bigger question but I think his history suggests that he does make late decisions on his contracts and where he wants to go. Man City will probably know that and be very well aware of that.

"Who wouldn't want that guy in their dugout?"

Former City midfielder Michael Brown then claimed it was worrying that Guardiola had not signed a new deal yet, adding: "I think we saw last season when there were questions about whether he was going to go on with the situation with the Champions League.

"He came out and said he would be manager next season and he's not doing it now, which is a worry to me. Manchester City supporters are all asking the question 'Why is he not committing to it?'

"We have to understand he's come to another country with all his family and he's committed so much time to the role.

"I think it would be a great thing [for him to stay] but it's hard if he's going to go to actually say now that he's not going to be here, so is that a reason why it isn't getting answered?

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"I certainly think he can go to any football club. You talk about Barcelona, there will be many clubs who will take Pep Guardiola so it does need resolving."

Ferdinand then added: "I see him having the type of character where if he felt he wasn't doing what was expected of him, he would be the first person to hold his hands up and say 'I'm going to walk away and go on to pastures new'.

"He just seems like that type of guy. He seems quite emotional at times and he'll go with his emotions."

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