Bayern Munich boss Pep Guardiola lambasts Barca president and directors
Bayern Munich manager Pep Guardiola has criticized Barcelona president Sandro Rosell and the current directors of the club. The former Barcelona manager, who left the Catalan club claiming he needed time to “recharge my batteries”, is infuriated with statements suggesting he didn’t make any effort to meet Barcelona manager Tito Vilanova in New York.
Pep Guardiola took a yearlong sabbatical from football in New York after a four-year stint with Barcelona. The former Barcelona player told reporters that Sandro Rosell disrespected the wishes he made when left the club. Pep Guardiola revealed that he asked Sandro Rosell to leave him in “peace”, but he ignored his wishes.
“I told them [the president and his directors] I was going 6,000km away and asked them to leave me in peace, but they haven't kept their word,” Pep Guardiola said. “I did my time [at Barcelona] then decided to leave.
“I want them to get on with the job and I wish them all the success in the world, because their success will also be mine - I don't need to say what I feel for this club.”
Pep Guardiola also talked about the time when Tito Vilanova visited New York for cancer treatment. The Champions League winner claims he has been incensed by statements suggesting he didn’t make an effort to see Tito Vilanova during his illness.
“Too many things have happened that have crossed the line,” Pep Guardiola said in his press conference at Bayern Munich’s preseason training ground at Lake Garda. “I will never forget that they used Tito's illness to cause me damage, because it's a lie that I never saw him in New York.
“I saw him once, and the reason I didn't see him more often was because it wasn't possible, and that wasn't my fault. To say that I don't wish the best of someone who was my colleague for so many years is very bad taste, and I didn't expect that.
“If any of the things I've said is not true, come out and rebut it, but it has to be them [Rosell and the board], not intermediaries or Barcelona messengers. Them.”
The tensions between Barcelona and Bayern Munich are set to rise in the following days as the two clubs meet for a friendly game on July 24. Pep Guardiola insists he wants to be professional and genial when the two meet for the preseason game.
“I did the best I could at Barcelona,” Pep Guardiola added. “The staff and coaches have nothing to worry about. I left and have nothing to complain about - all I asked was to be left in peace.
“I went off to learn English and I ended up trying to learn German. That was all I focused on. I just ask the board to go their own way and leave me alone and stop using me and my friends to hurt me.”