Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola has sensationally declared that he will never go back to Barcelona to be their manager again.
In an interview with Catalan TV channel TV3, Pep Guardiola insisted that his chapter with Barcelona is closed and that he will never return for a second stint to Camp Nou. The Manchester City manager also added that he has no intention of becoming the Catalan club’s president either.
Guardiola began his career in senior management in 2007 with Barcelona B, taking charge of a side that was in the Tercera division of Spanish football. He subsequently guided the side to the title to qualify for the Segunda Divsion B. Having made an instant impact with the reserve side, the former player was quickly promoted to the first-team, and it would usher in a glorious era.
Upon taking charge of the first-team squad at Barcelona, Guardiola guided a team that is considered to be one of the greatest in the history of the game, winning as many as 14 trophies in four years. The period was also synonymous of the rise of the famous “Tiki Taka” style of football as the Blaugrana dominated European football.
Since leaving Barcelona, Guardiola has enjoyed tremendous success with Bayern Munich and Manchester City, winning 9 trophies over the last five years. And while the Catalans have continued to win plenty of titles, they haven’t replicated the kind of success they enjoyed under the Spanish coach.
Unsurprisingly, the 47-year-old has been constantly linked with his former club, considering the spectacular legacy he left behind at Camp Nou. But, the manager has declared that he has no intention to return to Barcelona as the first-team coach once again, hinting he wouldn’t be able to recreate the success he enjoyed from 2008-2012.
“As a coach, it’s over [at Barça], because I am not the same, nor do they even look at me in the same way. I had the time of my life there. It was a fantastic age where I was taking on the world and we took it on, with some incredible players, a young president [Joan Laporta], Txiki [Begiristain, now City’s director of football]. It was a generation of brutal players and the best player in the world [Lionel Messi]. The stars aligned.”
Asked if he instead had plans to become the Barcelona president perhaps, he said that he did not see himself as anything other than a coach in football, and will be playing golf once he’s done being a manager.
“[Barcelona] President? No, I am a coach and I am good at what I do, you can’t be everything. When I stop coaching, you will find me playing golf.”
When the inevitable retirement from management happens is unknown, but it is likely to happen within the next decade or so, with Guardiola claiming last season that he is already “in the process” of reaching the end of his coaching career.
For now, Guardiola will be concentrating on breaking more records with Manchester City, having guided the club to an unprecedented Premier League title win where they became the first English side to amass 100 points after a top division campaign. As far as his tryst with Barcelona is concerned, it seems to be as good as over.