Pep Guardiola hits back at Jose Mourinho over Raheem Sterling suspicions: ‘Maybe he is a doctor?’

Mourinho questioned Sterling’s withdrawal

But Guardiola, who won the Champions League twice with a Barca side containing Messi, said: “Lionel Messi is a Barcelona player. I want him to finish his career there. That is what I want. I said it a thousand times. As a Barcelona fan I want Leo to finish there.”

Yet whether or not City’s future includes six-times world player of the year Messi, the club believe they are a far more attractive proposition with the inspirational Guardiola in charge.

Director of football Txiki Begiristain told City’s official website: “We already have an unbelievable squad. We have a lot of top players.

“But the life of the squad is always changing. There are some players asking to leave, there are other players that want to come. There are players that think they want to play more than the other ones.

“So this is the natural life of a squad. So what is very, very good for the club and for my job is having Pep.

“It’s quite easy to convince the players to come because Pep makes the players better. They can see an improvement and that is obvious and that helps to sign the players for Man City.”

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