News Update


‘Hysterical and ‘hated at times’ Manchester City The best is already Pep Guardiola.

Guardiola and his City players are one victory away from becoming the 10th team to ever accomplish the feat, which they already accomplished with Barcelona in 2009, when they won the league title, the domestic cup, and the European championship.

But regardless of the outcome in Istanbul on Saturday, Guardiola is already the best manager in the history of the game.

Because he has altered football, not because he consistently wins things (16 major awards and counting).

When I recently met one of Europe’s most sought-after youth coaches, the topic of what made the 52-year-old Spaniard unique came up.

The coach informed me that “Pep gave Joao Cancelo a directive.” I just had one thought when I heard it: “I know what you’re about to do, and I can’t defend against it.”

The coach claimed that even though it is not necessary, Guardiola’s unrelenting pursuit of perfection is what makes him so unique. His team is still capable of winning. He still strives for 100%, though.

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“The way I now view football… Before I met him, I’d never, ever seen anything like that.

Midfielder Javier Mascherano recalled Guardiola’s remarks during the squad meeting prior to Barcelona’s victory against Manchester United in the 2011 Champions League final. Mascherano claimed that it appeared as though Guardiola was referring to a match that they were playing right then.

You closed your eyes and found yourself in the thick of the action, he added. I was thinking, “I’ve seen this before,” throughout the game. Pep already informed me of it.

“Everything that he predicted would occur did occur as he predicted.”

He is referred to as a “genius who reads the game and covers every situation imaginable” by Ilkay Gundogan of Manchester City.

The late Johan Cruyff claimed that Guardiola’s only goal when he became Barcelona’s manager in 2008 was to “improve football and elevate his team to a higher level.” He has been referred to as “the coach with the most imagination in football” by former Argentina manager Jorge Sampaoli.

He is able to squeeze every last drop of effort from his team and is ruthless and coldly willing to get rid of players who are unwilling to give him their all.

He stands out from the competition thanks to these attributes and the caliber of his players.

‘I thought he was crazy,’ was the beginning of everything
An incident that perfectly captures Guardiola’s mentality happened shortly after he assumed leadership at Barcelona in 2008.

Victor Valdes, his goalkeeper, reminisced, saying, “I recall my first conversation with Guardiola. In his office at the Nou Camp, that is. He had a strategic board outside the box with two little magnets on either side of the goal. Do you recognize these two players, he asked?

“These are your center backs,” he continued. ‘When you’ve got the ball,’ he continued, and I had no idea what he was talking about. I want them in this position. I believed him to be insane.

Then he responded, ‘You’ll pass to them. From this point on, the play will be developed. I continued to believe he was really insane. But because I’m a little insane too, I connected with him. The defenders would have to be brave and seek the ball, I retorted. ‘Don’t worry, that’s my job,’ Pep reassured them. I’ll make certain they desire it. That is how it began.

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Since then, it has been his responsibility to persuade players during training sessions to perform what he requires of them. For the majority of football players, that is contrary to their nature.

Let’s take a moment to reflect on how football has developed: it began in the streets, with each player taking personal initiative.

But with time, it evolves into a more organized group procedure. Guardiola has stated in the past that “the player is the one who deserves all the credit,” but you get the impression that he is aware that a player is nothing without direction.

He is at his best with this Manchester City team. There are eleven players who are all pursuing the same goal. A goal for a coach.

He demands no less than that. When he thought he no longer had that in the past, at Bayern Munich and Barcelona, he left.

Lionel Messi and Pep Guardiola
Guardiola, who was known as “a schoolteacher you hated at the time,” was the man who guided Barcelona to the Triple in 2008–09.

The dominant football idea in 2008 was based on strong, well-organized defensive formations from which rapid transitions were played. Guardiola was a pioneer in creating a team that used the defense as the catalyst for offense rather than a way to end the game.

Pep Segura, a former sports director at Barcelona who may be the person who has studied Guardiola’s impact and influence the most, said that he is the first coach to begin focusing on what is known as “the construction phases of the attacking game.”

“He begins by focusing on the construction phase, which is what happens once the ball reaches middle, and then the exit phase (the building from the back). He created those two before beginning to work on the third, which was the last pass’s preparatory phase.

His demands are founded on clear-cut ideas. Maintain possession while playing quickly and simply.

And occasionally there may be a cost involved.

Bernardo Silva has already acknowledged to several of his Portugal teammates that the relentless repetition and demanding needs at Manchester City usually make him fatigued, despite the fact that it is these measures that have propelled him to the position he is in now.

Guardiola is comparable to the teacher you loathed in the beginning but subsequently came to admire because he expected so much more of you.

Under his rigorous training requirements, not all players advance. Those that advance will do so because they develop better game reading and expertise, better positioning, and better teammate assistance.

The player is under intense psychological pressure to perform the necessary actions for the team. That demonstrates one of Guardiola’s greatest strengths: his capacity to alter the mindset and way of thinking of players who are unwilling to change.

Since leaving Barcelona, he has worked with players like Thomas Muller, Franck Ribery, Silva, Kevin de Bruyne, and Jack Grealish who, despite having brash personalities, have all embraced his coaching style.

When Guardiola was at Barcelona, Dani Alves famously remarked, “If Pep had told me to jump off the third tier of the Nou Camp, then I would jump because I’d think there must be a good reason for it.”

Guardiola always stays on top of things, corrects mistakes, and raises the bar. His players may occasionally become irritated. When De Bruyne defeated Real Madrid convincingly in the Champions League semi-final in May, it happened. The Belgian briefly lost control, and Guardiola shouted his displeasure. De Bruyne yelled in frustration, “Shut up, I’m tired of hearing your voice.”

That voice keeps encouraging groups to succeed. Guardiola has adapted his ideas to fit each club he has led while never losing sight of his core principles. The core principles remain constant. The demands placed on his players don’t either.

He plans strategies to stay one step ahead of his opponents for the majority of his waking hours. He has an unusual sleeping schedule and sends early morning communications to his coaching team. He frequently needs on extended naps during the day to restore his energy.

His family has established a pattern, and he spends the most of his time inside. His wife Cristina continues to run her store in Barcelona, where she also resides with their children, Marius and Valentina. Maria, their other daughter, is a London-based Instagram influencer. The family travels together on a private jet.

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Few people in Guardiola’s clubs’ boardrooms completely comprehend his procedures. However, they are aware that they are effective.

The chairman of Manchester City, Khaldoon Al Mubarak, is aware that his team’s leader has an amazing work ethic and that he occasionally needs to make concessions for some of his fears.

Guardiola makes every effort to prevail. His close friend jokingly described him as “hysterical” when he does not get the desired outcomes.

After the opening match of Guardiola’s second season, Khaldoon saw that. In his personal space after the game, he kept yelling, “It is impossible, I will never be able to do what I want to do, impossible.”

The chairman’s job is to defuse the situation and assure him of the club’s unwavering support. Guardiola feeds off of his own drama and insecurities. If required, he will even create drama when none exists. It combines obsession and the desire to exert total control. He must believe that everything counts. He uses it as a test to see if his desire still exists.

He’s been known to request improved dish presentation. He expects security officers to act flawlessly. He enjoys seeing happy faces at the front desk. He wants the players to think that the expectations are the highest they have ever been.

Each game, he has four quick meetings. Every season, he has six to ten meetings in a room at the training facility with everyone, including waiters, doctors, physiotherapists, and receptionists. Like sardines in a can, everyone is crammed together. He urges them that they must continue to push.

Outsiders laud Guardiola as a genius if his team succeeds. The most lazy term ever used to describe Guardiola’s work is that he overthinks if he loses. They are ignoring the key idea.

A stick that is occasionally used to beat him without realizing the trail he is blazing for new coaches and players is the idea that the standard of excellence depends on having the best players.

There will be more. His close friends and family members think Manchester City will be his final club before he takes over a national team.

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The pursuit of excellence continues.
The most talented coach in the league is Guardiola. He develops the four phases of attack in his theories.

The first, known as the build-up, has already been covered by Valdes. Much of the game begins with having one more person than your opponents in a specific section of the field.

In the second phase, known as play construction, players are placed in various places and attack lines to achieve numerical advantage. Who else would have thought to turn John Stones, a center-back, into one of City’s most valuable midfielders to accomplish this?

The final pass, or assist, is created entirely during the third stage. This is the one that, in Guardiola’s opinion, still needs improvement.

The movements of fullbacks, center midfielders, and strikers prior to the final pass are a phase he has concentrated on more recently. Instead of letting the players practice shooting or crossing, he takes the final 10 minutes of practice to do that.

Despite City’s success, he is aware that he has not yet established the third stage or the fourth stage, which is known as “finalizing” in coaching jargon.

There is a feeling that what he wants to do is not yet ready for football culture. The ability to dribble and shoot whenever they like, as opposed to being instructed to, is what players want.

However, it will occur. He is constantly trying to improve his game play and game-playing philosophy.

Many people are listening and learning. His brand-new football culture will endure.

He has influenced at least five managers in the Premier League alone, including Thomas Frank, Marco Silva, Mikel Arteta, Erik ten Hag, and Roberto de Zerbi, who will soon be joined by Vincent Kompany as the fifth.

There are multiple influences at play. Guardiola has used the lessons he picked up from De Zerbi of Brighton.

However, the management of Manchester City has had an impact on international soccer. In the 2010 World Cup final, Spain’s starting lineup included seven players from his Barcelona squad. His team at Bayern contributed five of Germany’s winning first 11 players in 2014. He has won both domestic and European championships.

In the end, though, his greatest accomplishment can be found everywhere from the lowest levels of the game to the top.

He disproved the notion that there was nothing novel about the game of football that could be invented. Guardiola has established a reputation for noticing details that others miss.

There will be new difficulties. He will depart Manchester City when his contract expires in two years. People who laid the groundwork for his arrival and provided him with the resources he needs to move the game to a new setting have been all around him. He will have offers from national teams after City, where such labor won’t be viable.

However, we should love Guardiola’s football since it is the result of an incredible mind.


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