Pep GuardiolaPep Guardiola has distanced himself from a return to the Camp Nou in the wake of the continuing crisis at Barcelona.
A bust up between Lionel Messi and coach Luis Enrique and the firing of sports director Andoni Zubizarreta in the aftermath of the club’s transfer ban has pushed an already tainted Barcelona board into crisis.
The chaos that has engulfed the club has been so all consuming that president Josep Maria Bartomeu has called presidential elections for the end of the season as a result of dissatisfaction with his running of the La Liga club.
Joan Laporta, who appointed Guardiola following the sacking of Frank Rijkaard in 2008, is rumoured to be considering running again which has led to suggestions of a return for Guardiola.
However, the current Bayern Munich manager was quick to dispel those rumours at a press conference in Qatar, where his side are playing mid-winter friendlies.
“I am not Barcelona’s solution”, said Guardiola. “There are many options – the right people will make the right decisions to maintain Barca as one of the best clubs in the world”.
Speaking specifically of the Laporta link, Guardiola added: “He has not said that [Laporta could secure Guardiola as technical director], you’ve read it but he did not say it.”
It would be a sensational story, but there appears little chance Guardiola will return in such a capacity. Firstly, he has a job on his hands with Bayern and won’t rest until he has made them Champions League winners; secondly he has made no secret of the fact that he wants to manage in England after his time in Germany. Why would one of the greatest coaches of the modern era move upstairs so quickly? Surely this won’t happen.
Daniel Rathjen, Eurosport Germany, from Doha: “There are rumours but nothing more. Guardiola is very careful here and yesterday he even refused to sign a fan’s Barca jersey. In my opinion there is no chance for a comeback in Barcelona. Pep is totally happy at Bayern and an extension of his contract is more likely than a return to Barca. He also often said that he would prefer England as his next station when he is not happy in Munich anymore. Pep is a coach and doesn’t want to be anybody else. And for him the chapter at Barca as a coach is definitely closed.”
Cristian Maxedo, Eurosport Spain: “To be honest we think this is only the desire of Barcelona’s supporters who dream of Pep’s return. Anyway, Barca fans are dreaming of Pep on the bench but perhaps he is thinking of a returning in an executive role, and not to go back to the bench at a team where he has already won all the titles.