Pep Guardiola has firmly closed the door on a return to Barcelona in a move that could worry Arsenal fans.

Guardiola’s current Manchester City deal is up in 2025, and there have been rumours circulating that he could call it a day with the Blues come the end of next season. A return to Barcelona has been touted as a possible destination.

However, speaking at the Legend Trophy golf tournament in Alt Emporda, Catalonia this week, Guardiola has now insisted that his much touted return to the Spanish champions is no longer on the table. When asked about any potential return to Barca again, Guardiola struck a clear tone saying: “Yes, the door is closed. We’re getting old now.”

The former Bayern manager’s position on the Barcelona job may have come as a surprise to some as it was only back in January 2023 that Guardiola had told reporters during a press conference: “If I’m training here, wherever and Barcelona calls me, I’ll go to Barcelona, it’s my club.”

Barcelona’s hunt for a new manager has now been resolved after a rocky affair with former coach Xavi saw several U-turns over the future of the former midfielder. The Barca legend eventually stepped down from his duties at the Nou Camp with former Bayern and Germany boss Hansi Flick getting the nod to lead the Spanish club.

Barca may have a coach in place but with the inconsistency surrounding managers at the Nou Camp in recent years, Guardiola’s firm stance on not returning to his former club will now see all eyes on Jurgen Klopp and, in what will concern Arsenal fans, Mikel Arteta.

There were growing rumours that Barcelona believed they could entice the former Liverpool manager away from his intended summer sabbatical when Klopp first announced his shock departure from the Reds back in January, however that did not come to fruition with the former Borussia Dortmund boss headstrong in his decision to take some time away from the game after nine years with Liverpool.

The news that Guardiola no longer sees Barcelona as a viable port of call should he part ways with City will leave Arsenal fans with a very nervous disposition. In January, reports surfaced in Spain that the Arsenal boss had already agreed to succeed Xavi, however Arteta was fast to dispell those rumours describing the story as “fake news” but the fact that Areta has just one year left on his contract will be of a concern to Gunners’ supporters.

Nevertheless, Barca have an experienced coach in Flick and has Arteta has gone on record as saying he is happy in North London. When asked if there had been any devleopments on extending his time at Arsenal, the former Everton player said: “I still have a year in my contract, that’s a long time in football. The players are happy, the club is happy, no issues. I’m just focusing on the games and winning football matches and that’s the most important thing right now.”