Eto'o's superb preseason - and a lack of concrete offers - has convinced Guardiola to perform an about-face and include the striker in his new season plans.

The new coach said yesterday: "Before you ask me, I want to give you the news that Samuel Eto'o will continue to be a player of Barcelona next season.

"I know I said that I was not planning to keep him, but we both also said that things could change when preseason training started, and so it has been.

"He has shown great passion in the preseason and we decided to keep him. My duty is to get a top performance from all my players and that's why I decided to keep him."