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Pep Guardiola explains why Ferran Torres "has to go" after Man City accept transfer bid

Pep Guardiola has no qualms about letting Ferran Torres leave in the January transfer window after Manchester City accepted a substantial offer from his former club, Barcelona

Ferran Torres has no choice but to leave Manchester City if he feels he would be happier at Barcelona, according to Pep Guardiola.

The City manager insists he is "absolutely not" disappointed Torres is on the way out of the Etihad after accepting Barca's offer worth €65million (£54.7m) on Wednesday.

The Spain international, 21, only arrived from Valencia in August 2020 but the stark reality of City's strength and depth means he has settled for a bit-part role.

Torres has only made six appearances this season, scoring three goals, and he has been missing since October with a serious foot injury.

Even when he is fit, the versatile forward is grappling for minutes with the likes of Raheem Sterling, Riyad Mahrez, Jack Grealish, Phil Foden, Gabriel Jesus and Bernardo Silva.

Guardiola appreciates Torres must join a club where he has the opportunities he seeks and, as a Barcelona legend, he understands the lure of the Catalan giants.

"If you want to leave because you’re not happy here, you believe you’ll be happy in another place, you have to go," Guardiola said of Torres.

"The career is short, one day it’s over. If he wants to leave, absolutely no disappointment. It’s his desire, I’m happy for him."

Torres may have already played his last game for City as he is not expected back from injury until January.

If that is the case, he leaves the Sky Blues with a respectable tally of 16 goals and four assists in 43 appearances, 12 of which came as a substitute.

Guardiola added: "If we had just two or three attacking players then maybe Ferran would think he had more chance to play and stay longer.

"Always I have the feeling that when Barcelona or Real Madrid knock on the door of players then it is difficult to say no. So difficult.

"They are still the strongest teams in the world in terms of fashion, cities and many reasons.

"He is from Spain, Barcelona knock and I understand why he wants to leave."

Guardiola also seemed to aim a jibe at Tottenham and their chairman, Daniel Levy, by reiterating he would not make a player stay against their wishes.

City pursued Spurs striker Harry Kane last summer but Levy turned down their £100million bid, which Guardiola seemed to allude to in his press conference on Thursday.

"If you are not happy, you have to leave," he said. "We’re not a club like other teams when you want to leave CEO and president say no."