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Pep Guardiola: The perfect fit for Bayern Munich
April 27th, 2012 was a day that would be the beginning of change in German football forever. Josep Guardiola, commonly referred to as “Pep”, former Barcelona midfielder and, at the time, their manager, announced that he wanted to take a sabbatical at the end of the domestic season. There had been rumours circulating in the previous days, but the press conference that Friday confirmed those rumblings. He would eventually close out his final campaign at Barca with a Copa Del Rey triumph, after losing out to Real Madrid in La Liga and Chelsea in the Champions League.
Guardiola headed for New York City with his family that summer for his break, but being the most sought after coach in the world made it anything but. Since August, he’s been linked with the likes of Manchester City, Chelsea, AC Milan, Bayern Munich, and the Brazilian national team. His agent repeatedly exclaimed that he would make a decision on his next club in January or February, leaving journalists with empty columns and deleted tweets.
Finally, another massive step in the revolution of German football took place on January 16th, 2013, nearly nine months since Guardiola stepped down from his previous job. His entourage confirmed that the Catalan bench boss would manage Bayern Munich starting in July. Just a day before the announcement, Gianluca Di Marzio of Sky Sport Italia tweeted that it was all but done, yet other media members rubbished the tweets, saying he would most likely go to England.
“In England, I’m always surprised that people always support everything and that is nice. That’s why, maybe, I hope to have the opportunity to coach there,” said Guardiola.
“I’ve always found English football fascinating. The environment, the crowd, the supporters…”
Judging by those words, it was no wonder why everyone assumed that Manchester City and Chelsea were the frontrunners for the former Spanish international.
“In Italy, Latin people will support you when you’re playing, then when you lose, they want to kill you.”
That all but cinched it at that point, it essentially dismissed AC Milan as one of the favourites to sign Pep.
A team no one remembered was Bayern Munich, and they eventually snatched him, making Blues and certain Mancunians cry, whilst sending Die Roten supporters into a frenzy.
Chelsea fans foolishly think that their organization is larger than Bayern’s, but that’s just not the case. 22 Bundesliga titles, 15 DFB Pokal trophies (both of which are record amounts), and four Champions League victories ends any of that nonsense. They’re also one of the most stable, well run clubs on the planet. Only Real Madrid, Arsenal, and Manchester United made profits after taxes in 2011 (Barcelona, Chelsea, Manchester City, and others were in debt). Bayern are easily the biggest side in Germany. They sell approximately 600,000 shirts a year, have a five plus year waiting list for season tickets, and sell out the Allianz Arena on a consistent basis. This shows Pep Guardiola that the club not only has a solid foundation, but an entire skyscraper built on top of it.
As for the squad itself, it’s already amazingly deep in talent, most of which are youth graduates and capped by the German national team. David Alaba, Holger Badstuber, Thomas Muller Mats Hummels (now at Dortmund) and Toni Kroos are just a few of the young products who are impressing at every level. Players like Philipp Lahm and Bastian Schweinsteiger are the other senior members that are older and more established. Put those points along with the fact that they’re all German, and that’s what Pep generally had at Barcelona. Other youngsters like Emre Can, Patrick Weihrauch, and Lukas Raeder are still in the youth ranks at Bayern, but they have bright futures, plus there’s a lot more where that came from, like Barca’s prestigious youth academies.
Bayern Munich are the model side that Pep would want to manage. Stable, patient, oozing in talent at all levels, rich, tremendous facilities, die hard support, and a director in Mattias Sammer who has big plans for the German giants. A new training ground is just one of those projects, and with his knowledge in the transfer market, him and Guardiola will make a dream combination. Looking forward, Pep Guardiola could certainly lead Bayern Munich to win the European Cup next season – he is 9/4 to win the Champions League with Ladbrokes. Watch out for Bayern Munich starting this summer as Guardiola makes his mark.