Francisco Novelletto Neto, the vice president of the Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF), has claimed he spoke to Pep Guardiola a few years ago about potentially taking over as Brazil manager.
He made the admission when speaking to Brazilian outlet Radio Grenal, and said the Selecao were essentially priced out of a move for Guardiola given the Manchester City manager’s current wages.
“About three years ago, we got into contact with Guardiola, we spoke with his agent. He said that Guardiola would accept coaching the Brazilian national team. However, his salary is €24m per year (£21m),” said Novelletto.
"A colleague of mine who sought the information almost had a heart attack. We suggested a basic salary of €2m (£1.75m). He suggested €24m, not counting all the ‘plus more’, because he would have to leave his country to come to Brazil and could ask for up to €30m (£26m)."
This is not the first time Guardiola has been linked with the Brazil job and earlier this year a report in Marca stated the CBF were keen to appoint the former Barcelona and Bayern Munich manager after Tite departs at the end of the 2022 World Cup.
"I am under contract here. I am so happy here,” Guardiola said at the time. “Now is not the moment [to discuss the links]. I don’t know where that comes from. It is a fantastic national team. Brazil is always a strong candidate or the favourite. It always was and it will always be."
In August 2021, the Catalan also discussed the possibility of managing in South America after he leaves City. “Next step will be a national team, if there is a possibility. A national team is the next step,” he said at an XP Investimentos event. “I would like to train a South American [team], European [national side], playing a Copa America – I want to have that experience.”
Guardiola’s current contract at City expires at the end of the season, although it’s been widely reported that he could sign a new deal during the World Cup break, with the Blues squad set to travel to Abu Dhabi, where City’s owners are based.