Guardiola to quit Barcelona

11:56 27/04/2012 Spain - Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola will leave at the end of this season after deciding not to extend his contract, a source close to the club told Reuters on Friday.

Guardiola informed club president Sandro Rosell of his decision on Thursday, the source said.

Guardiola will tell his players of his decision at Friday morning's training and Barca will then issue a statement announcing the coach's decision.

Training was due to start at 11 a.m. local time (0900, SA, CAT, GMT+2)) at the club's facilities on the outskirts of the Catalan capital.

Speculation about Guardiola's future heightened after Barcelona were knocked out of the Champions League by Chelsea 3-2 on aggregate in their semifinal on Tuesday.

That followed a 2-1 home loss to arch rivals Real Madrid on Saturday meaning they are likely to miss out on a fourth successive La Liga title.

The 41-year-old former Barca and Spain midfielder has enjoyed a hugely successful stint with the Catalan club winning 13 trophies in four seasons, whilst playing a passing style of football that has been widely acclaimed as the best in the world.

- Reuters