Pep Guardiola: A Masterstroke By The German Heavyweights

There have been rumours spreading like wild fire since the beginning of last week that former Barcelona player/manager and history maker, Josep ‘Pep’ Guardiola will take over from current Bayern Munich coach Jupp Heynckes at the end of the season.

The speculations were becoming stronger by every passing minute and doubts were put to bed when the German giants announced last Wednesday that indeed Mr Guardiola was to become their next manager cum the end of the season.

It was a decision well applauded by a few, but many were astonished that the former Spanish midfield pearl chose the Bavarian outfit over the likes of CFC and Manchester City. He (Pep) even stated his desire to manage in England one day since he never had the opportunity to ply his trade there as a player. Bubble bursting news for all EPL followers.

There was some outrage on the announcement by Bayern re: Guardiola. Nevertheless, his former charges at Barcelona like Captain Carles Puyol and GK Jose Pinto gave him their full backing and all the support he ever needs to succeed at the very demanding Bundesliga outfit.

However, even more despairing was the extreme displeasure shown by a very strong, passionate and dedicated Bayern Munchen fan from Bulgaria called Vasil Kotsev(@jmliak). Having temporarily retired (in his own words) his twitter account well over 6 months ago, he brought it outta retirement Wednesday night for a few hours to express his utter disgust at the appointment of Pep Guardiola.

Below are the points he raised on why he’s not in the least pleased with the Gaurdiola capture.

@jmliak- I am going to bring this account out of retirement for a few tweets, because there are some things that need to be said today..

@jmliak- Bayern probably made their biggest mistake (signing Gaurdiola for next season) since appointing Jurgen Klinsmann back in 2008

@jmliak- I am going to outline why I think so, and everyone is welcome to try and counter any of my points. I actually look forward to that.

@jmliak- Point 1: Pep good for youth players? Out of the 10 youth players he introduced, only 1 (Busquets) became a regular at Barcelona.

@jmliak- Point 2: Pep is awful at transfers. Hleb, Ibra, Sanchez, Mascherano, Villa, Chygrynsky, Fab. Dani Alves is his best buy- enough said. Sold Eto’o

@jmliak- Point 3: Pep doesn’t work with out and out strikers. Ruined Villa’s career, nearly did the same to Ibra. Bayern currently have 3 pure strikers now.

@jmliak- Point 4: Pep did not build this Barca team. Pep inherited Van Gaal and Rijkaard’s team, and despite his efforts, he did not change much.

@jmliak- Point 5: Pep didn’t make Xavi world class. Xavi really is a late bloomer, and he was only given a chance when Deco left. Hardly Pep’s accomplishment.

@jmliak- Point 6: Pep doesn’t use wingers and they eventually leave. Hleb and Sanchez to name just two. Bayern have Ribery, Robben, Shaqiri and Muller.

@jmliak- Point 7: Pep has ;little to no input in FCB’s success. He stumbled upon the best midfield and the best attacker. All he needed to do is field them.

@jmliak- Point 8: Pep just sat and watched games for free on the bench. He’s a zero tactically and couldn’t do anything when the going got tough.

@jmliak- Point 9: When Messi did not play well and Pep faced a coach who actually has a clue, he was helpless. Hiddink and Mourinho just 2 of them.

@jmliak- Point 10: Under Pep, Barca turned into a limited team in which 10 players supported one. Each time Messi was shut out, Barca lost.

@jmliak- Point 11: If Bayern wanted possession football and youth players, they would have stayed with Van Gaal. He is better than Pep in every aspect.

@jmliak- Point 12: Pep does not know German. No quality coach would agree to work in a country and not know the language (Quoting Mourinho here).

@jmliak- Point 13: Bayern need a coach that has tactical ability and win-at-any-cost attitude. They needed Mourinho, not Pep. Should have waited 6 months.

@jmliak- Point 14: Jupp worked really hard to build a team that is Multi-dimensional and flexible. Pep will be the end of that. Bayern shouldn’t be Barca.

@jmliak- Point 15: Pep is about to work with a man thrice more stubborn, forceful, and influential than him.- Sammer. Good luck with that.

@jmliak- Point 16: Probably the biggest proof that Pep was a pawn at Barca is that his assistant is doing better than him so far in the League.
The 16 points above are just off the top of Mr Vasil’s head as he put it, but some are very valid and well constructed, although I personally disagree with a few, I sincerely am with him for the first 3 points. Point 4 has some truth in it, but someone has to inherit a team. He (Pep) changed the team wholly and brought a new winning mentality to the set-up and made them very very difficult to beat…Van Gaal and Frank’s teams didn’t embody that.

Point 5 is what I kept hitting on in 2008. Xavi only became Barcelona’s main midfield man when Anderson ‘DECO’ De Souza left. The Barcelona no 6 emerged from Deco’s shadow to establish himself as not only a mainstay in the Blaugrana team, but the fulcrum. So Pep just monitored the situation and supported the motion.

Point 6 is a fact. But where I think Mr Kotsev is wrong is the tagging of Muller as a pure winger. In a 4-3-3 format (Pep’s favoured strategy), Muller is a wing forward/left sided striker and can easily adapt to the Guardiola master plan (however and whenever it changes) because he is a technically gifted footballer. Same goes for Robben, Ribery and Shaqiri.

Mr Vasil was too angry to think straight when he was tweeting point 7. Pep is pivotal to whatever Barcelona are and will be in future. He totally brought a new meaning to tiki-taka and atttacking football. He transformed good players to great players and is the reason why Messi is regarded as one of the best footballers in History. He is the focal point of football transformation in modern times. He is that revered.

Point 8 is absolute nonsense. Arrant balderdash. If Pep wasn’t tactically adept, he wouldn’t have won the staggering number of titles in his time at the Catalan club. As for point 9, it is a matter of opinion really. I do not quite agree with it. Pep has a dominant record v Mourinho (Hiddink floored him tactically, though).

Point 10 is a half truth. Messi was the main beneficiary of the Guardiola ideology. Pep’s Barcelona teams were built around the Argie great – that was why Eto’o and Ibra were shipped off. Leo was always the main man and that was Pep’s thing.

Point 11 shows that Mr Vasil hasn’t really forgiven Uli, Karl-Heinz Rummenigge (KHR) and Franz Beckenbauer for showing Louis Van Gaal (LVG) the exit door. But saying Van Gaal is better than Pep in every aspect is going over the top. Possession football? Spare me that.

In Guardiola’s 247 games as Barcelona manager, Hi side out-possessed every team they faced. An unreal statistic. In terms of promoting youth players, only a few have/can bettered/better Mr Van Gaal. Andres Iniesta is eternally grateful to the Dutch managerial legend for whatever he is today, and many other greats who were given a chance by LVG.

Point 12 is easily the most trivial. Pep is taking over the Reds in 6 months. That should be more than enough time to learn some German. No intelligent and well trained soldier goes to war unprepared and Josep is too super to falter in that respect.

Point 13 is also sheepishly mundane and daft (with all due respect). Pep knows how to win and it is only after next season, we can begin to judge him based on what he has done right or wrong. Mourinho is a class act, so is Guardiola.

Point 14 sees Mr Kotsev showing sympathy for the departing Fohlen Legend, Jupp Heynckes. Yes, he has made the Bayern team multi-dimensional and bla bla bla…But the Football World is a harsh place as seen with Julio Cesar Falcioni’s dismissal at Boca and EL PELADO Almeyda’s at the Monumental (River Plate).

These are just a few examples of how managers are shipped off at the slightest provocation, not minding what they have won or/and done; Sean O’Driscoli’s at NFFC is a recent one. About the phrase/statement- ‘Bayern shouldn’t be Barca’. That’s the idea, right? Sammer and his team want Pep to make DIE ROTEN unbeatable and unplayable like Barca were in his four years at the helm. Mr Vasil should take a chill pill here.

Point 15 shouldn’t really be a problem. Sammer is stubborn, headstrong, strong-willed and very influential. Other football directors have been worse attitude-wise and still managed to get along with their coaches. Pep and Matias will come good for the sake of Bayern Munich and who knows? They might become the best of friends. Life is unpredictable you know.

Point 16 is more or less laughable. ‘The end justifies the means’ they say. Pep was La Liga Champion 3 of the 4 years he was at the Nou Camp and whichever way he started out every league season is inconsequential as long as he reached his set objectives. I like the phrase-‘so far’, as the league is still on. Don’t get me wrong, Tito has been exceptional ‘so far’. Not yet ‘so good’

All in all, PEP GUARDIOLA’s return to football has been saluted by majority of us as a welcome relief and we hope he does very well at the ALLIANZ ARENA. Wish you the best Josep the Great.

Opinions/Views are humbly welcome. Please state your minds in the comment box.


Written by Ohireime Eboreime

Follow him on Twitter @ohiskaka1990

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