PEP GUARDIOLA looked relaxed as he jetted back into snowy Manchester from Abu Dhabi at the weekend.
The Manchester City boss took advantage of an unexpected 19-day break from matches by taking his squad for some warm weather training in the Middle East.
City already have one trophy in the bag and it’s only a matter of time until they are crowned Premier League champions.
In addition Guardiola gathered his players together on Friday to watch the Champions League quarter-final draw – which saw them paired with Liverpool.
Guardiola has now waved most of his players off on international duty – and will be praying they return unscathed next week.
That’s because the two-week period after they return could go down as among the most memorable in City’s history.
Potentially they could clinch the title in a home derby against Manchester United on April 7 – described by skipper Vincent Kompany as a “once in a lifetime opportunity”.
Either side is the two-legged European showdown with Jurgen Klopp’s men – the only team to beat Pep’s squad in the Premier League this season.
How to get Raheem Sterling to perform on his old stomping ground is one puzzle Guardiola must try to solve during his time off.
The Kop have still not forgiven the England youngster for the manner of his departure almost three years ago – and make their feelings known in no uncertain terms.
And each time he has gone back to Anfield, he has looked like a player with the weight of the world on his shoulders.
After almost a month on the sidelines with a hamstring injury, Sterling was in lively form on his return against Stoke last week – so can he turn it on against his former club?
But that’s not the only thing that will be worrying Pep over the remainder of this month. How he can stop Mo Salah and Co is another problem.
The Reds put four past City at Anfield in January and a repeat could prove fatal to City’s hopes of reaching the last-four for only the second time.
He must decide if it is an occasion for the experienced Kompany – against one of the most-feared strike forces in the world.
And if so then who – out of Nicolas Otamendi, Aymeric Laporte and John Stones – should play alongside him in that crucial first leg?
When to bring back £49.3million defender Benjamin Mendy is another tantalising one for the Etihad chief.
He knows what the former Monaco man was giving his team before the cruciate ligmanet injury he suffered in late September.
In only four Premier League games, the French international had supplied 29 crosses – six more than his two replacements have managed COMBINED over the whole campaign.
He will not want to rush Mendy back – but will be well aware what a boost a player of that calibre can give him.
At the other end of the pitch, there is plenty to occupy Guardiola’s mind too.
Gabriel Jesus has yet to show his best form since returning from injury and Pep will be looking for reasons why.
The young Brazilian was in the middle of a goal drought when he was injured at Crystal Palace on New Year’s Eve.
In those games and since his return late last month, he has looked some way short of the player who burst onto the scene 15 months ago.
Guardiola is a man who rarely switches off from football – and he is not likely to start now despite the great position his team are in.