Former-Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola would end his sabbatical 'tomorrow' if offered the opportunity to take over the Brazil job, according to reports in Brazil.

The Spaniard has been linked with Manchester City, Manchester United and Chelsea, but the report claims he would only end his year-long break from football to head up Brazil's bid to be crowned World Champions on home soil in two years time.

The five-time World Cup winners sacked Mano Menezes earlier this week, and Guardiola has emerged as the favourite to take over. Brazil host the World Cup in 2014, and the pressure is on to make sure the host country shine in front of their own fans.

The former-Barca chief has been strongly linked with Chelsea, despite the recent appointment of Rafa Benitez.

Benitez replaced Roberto Di Matteo on Wednesday, but was only hired on a seven-month contract, suggesting Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich is still waiting for Guardiola to finish his sabbatical.

The Dailly Mirror has carried the reports from Brazilian football site Lance! that claim Guardiola is set to spurn offers to return to club management, and instead try his hand in the international arena.

Lance! editor, as reported by the Daily Mirror, said a source close to Pep revealed Brazil was "the only team in the world he would start to train with tomorrow," and that Guardiola would become "world champion with Brazil.

Walter de Mattos Jr said: "I questioned [my source] twice, letting him know that publishing this would cause a reaction not only from the CBF [Brazilian Football Cofederation], but also of the entire Brazilian press.

"The caller was very certain and repeated: 'If Pep trains the squad he will be world champion, and you can say that to the president of the CBF.'"

Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini won the Premier League last season, for the first time in the club's history, but his failure to get City out of the group stage of the Champions League has put the Italian under a bit of pressure at the Etihad Stadium.

Across Manchester at Old Trafford, Sir Alex Ferguson intimated this week that next year could be his final season with Manchester United.

The 70-year-old manager was speaking at the club's unveiling of a statute in his honour outside Old Trafford. Guardiola has been tipped to replace Ferguson, once the Scot decides to call it a day.

But the favourites remain Chelsea - even though they only just hired a new manager.

The spectre of Guardiola will hang over Stamford Bridge until he takes another job. The former-Barca boss haunted Roberto Di Matteo, even though the Italian won the Champions League and FA Cup during a remarkable seven month spell as Chelsea boss.

And it's all because many view Guardiola as the best manager in the world. The ex-Spain international won 14 trophies during an incredible four years at the Nou Camp, and Lionel Messi - widely regarded as the best player in the world - said he's the best coach in the world.

Only Jose Mourinho can rival Guardiola in terms of managerial reputation at a relatively young age, and the two bosses will likely have the pick of the jobs when they decide to take on fresh challenges.

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