Pep Guardiola is understood to be on the brink of ending his tenure as manager of Barcelona after telling the club he cannot carry on.
The 41-year-old Catalan will announce his intentions at a press conference at the Nou Camp on Friday afternoon.
And barring a last-minute change of heart, Guardiola is expected to confirm his departure from the club he has led to two Champions League titles.
The Barcelona manager has arranged to meet his players on Friday morning.
It is thought Guardiola will take a year-long break from football should he leave his post.
Guardiola spent three hours with Barcelona president Sandro Rosell on Thursday morning.
During the talks, which took place at Rosell’s private home in the city, Guardiola is understood to have expressed his belief that he could “not go on”.
What had begun as discussions over an extension to his one-year rolling contract soon turned into a push to keep Guardiola at the club. Rosell is understood to have offered Guardiola unlimited spending power this summer but the Catalan will not base his decision on money.
Guardiola, who captained the club as a player, has always maintained that he would do what was best for the club. He spent Thursday afternoon with his family and is expected to tell Rosell of his decision later.
While it cannot be ruled out that Guardiola may change his mind, the club fear that the man who has led them to two Champions League titles and three La Liga crowns has made his decision.
The manner of the defeat by Real Madrid on Saturday, a result which effectively saw Barcelona relinquish their Primera Division title to Jose Mourinho’s men and the Champions League defeat by Chelsea have prompted this rethink.
Rosell has, however, been firmly behind his manager in the wake of those results. “I hope that Josep is our coach next season,” Rosell said on Wednesday.
“We have confidence in him; he is essential for our type of play.”
Guardiola stepped up from manager of the Barcelona B side in 2008 and has gone on to become the most successful coach in the club’s illustrious history.
During his four-year tenure, Guardiola has won two Champions League crowns, three La Liga trophies, one Copa del Rey, three Supercopas, two Uefa Super Cups and two Fifa Club World Cups.