Spanish journalist Marti Perarnau has revealed how Bayern Munich coach Pep Guardiola admits to seeing himself as a Manchester United manager in the future.
In a book chronicling the first season of Guardiola as a coach of German Champions Bayern Munich, Perarnau also tells of how the former Barcelona boss rejected a move to English Premier League clubs Chelsea and Manchester City.
Marti Perarnau writes in the book titled, Pep Confidential: The Inside Story of Pep Guardiola’s First Season at Bayern Munich:
“From the start, Pep was well disposed to the overtures from the Bavarian club. A year before, in late July 2011, not long after a resounding 3-1 victory in the Champions League final against Manchester United at Wembley, Barcelona competed in the Audi Cup in Munich.
“Pep liked the set-up at Säbener Strasse [Bayern’s training complex], despite the fact that it was smaller than Barça’s training ground and had fewer technical facilities.
“The Catalan was impressed and told Manel Estiarte [his personal assistant] privately: “I like this place. I could see myself coaching here one day. Pep had said something very similar a few months before, at Manchester United.
“The day after beating Real Madrid in the Champions League semi-final, Guardiola and Estiarte travelled to Manchester to watch their next opponent in action.
“It was May 4, 2011, and the pair sat together in the stands of Old Trafford watching Sir Alex Ferguson’s team beat Schalke 4-1. Once again Pep had turned to his friend and said: ‘I like this atmosphere. I could see myself coaching here one day.’
“Guardiola has always felt a deep admiration, almost veneration, for the legendary teams and players of Europe.”
“During his sabbatical year in New York, the job offers poured in. His ex-colleague, Txiki Begiristain, the director of football at Manchester City, was very insistent.
“He also met up in Paris with Roman Abramovich, who was prepared to do anything to lure Pep to Chelsea.
“Bayern, too, were anxious to register an early interest and a delegation from Munich attended Pep’s last game with Barça, the final of the Copa del Rey against Athletic Bilbao in Madrid on May 25 2012.
“In the event, the Bayern delegation did not get a chance speak to Guardiola, but they made their interest clear during a meeting with his agent. Within a few months, Pep had chosen Bayern.”