English Premiership

Mascherano rules out Guardiola reunion

Javier Mascherano (TEAMtalk)
Javier Mascherano (TEAMtalk)

Cape Town - Barcelona utility man Javier Mascherano has ruled out a move to Manchester City, but admits he would be open to the idea of making a return to the Premier League.

The 31-year-old joined the Spanish giants while Pep Guardiola was at the club, leading to suggestions that he could be lined up for a reunion with the Spaniard at Manchester city ahead of the 2016/17 campaign.

However, Mascherano has dismissed the speculation over a potential move to the Citizens, while he was also quick to point out that he wouldn't necessarily return to former club Liverpool.

"No, no, Pep is not going to call me," he told The Independent. "He will not call me, no, no, no - but returning to the Premier League? I don't know.

"My feeling for Liverpool does not mean I'm tied to them. If in the future a Premier League team was interested in me and I had the chance to go back, you can't say: 'No, I would only play for one team.' I don't know what I would do."

The Argentina international also confirmed he would looking to return to a regular midfield role if he were to depart Barcelona.

He added: "I still feel like a central midfielder and one day I will not play any more for Barcelona and I will go and play somewhere else and I'm sure I will do so as a central midfielder.

"Being a central defender for Barca it is not like being a centre-back for any other team. The part of the pitch that you end up playing in is very similar to the part you would inhabit if you were playing in midfield.

"The only thing that changes is that I receive the ball facing the pitch, and not with my back to the play.

"If you take me back to defend in my area the whole time, then obviously I am going to suffer more because of my physical stature."