Guardiola revels in pressure

Pep Guardiola admits his huge success at Barcelona means the

pressure of expectation will be on him when he makes his return to

the game.

Guardiola, currently on a year-long sabbatical in New York after

leaving Barcelona last May, has a agreed a three-year deal at

Bayern and will take over at the end of the season when current

boss Jupp Heynckes retires.

Guardiola won 14 trophies during an incredible four years in

charge at the Nou Camp, including three Primera Division titles and

two Champions League crowns.

He is also credited with moulding a Barca side which many class

as the greatest team of all time.

Speaking to FIFA.com in an interview conducted last week and

published on Thursday morning, the 41-year-old admitted his time at

Barca has put added pressure on him going into his next post, but

sees his track record as a positive rather than a negative.

“Yes, but I wouldn’t change it! I prefer to carry on like this,

having experienced what I’ve been through, rather than starting out

somewhere you’ve got to win everyone over,” said Guardiola,

speaking at the Ballon d’Or awards ceremony.

“Things are a bit different now: when I started out at Barcelona

some 86 or 87 per cent of people didn’t want me.

“Now, thanks to how well everything went, there’ll be clubs that

are more interested in me. These things happen in life and you

can’t control them. We achieved what we did all together, thanks to

so many people, and I’ll remember everything I experienced during

those years.”

Bayern were one of a host of clubs reportedly keen on securing

Guardiola’s services, with Chelsea, Manchester United, Manchester

City, AC Milan, Roma and Paris Saint Germain all linked with

him.

When asked about that speculation, Guardiola said: “It made me

feel bad for the coaches who were in the clubs at the time. I

personally wouldn’t like it if I was coaching somewhere and my club

was releasing this kind of information while I was still there.

“But I’ve kept out of everything, I’m still out of it and I’ll

stay that way, out of respect for the people who are trying to do

their jobs. That said, it makes you think that you’re not getting

the offer because of how good you are, but because of what you’ve

won.

“We won a lot and that’s why I’m more in demand now than when I

started out, when only three or four people at Barcelona believed

in me. The others didn’t feel the same way.”