Bayern Munich coach Pep Guardiola has hit back at the media for criticising his team selection, insisting that players have to convince him that they deserve to play, not journalists.
Reports in Germany have suggested players are not entirely happy with Guardiola’s style, suggesting they do not understand his methods.
The coach left Mario Gotze out of Saturday’s DFL-Supercup defeat to Wolfsburg, which prompted further questions from reporters.
“We played in a competitive match, Mario Gotze did not play, you might also ask about Arjen Robben or Thomas Muller,” he said. “I cannot say in every press conference why one player or another did not play.
“Only 11 can play, the players know that and the press should too. Gotze is one of my favourite players. Last season he played in all of the games except two or three.
“But they have to try and convince me on the pitch in every game, not in the past. They have to convince me, not journalists.”
Ex-Bayern and Germany player Lothar Matthaus also took a pop at the Spaniard, claiming Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho is the better coach, though Guardiola was not interested in comparing himself to his former Real Madrid rival.
“Everyone can criticise. Journalists can also criticise me. Mourinho is one of the best coaches in the world. I don’t know if I’m the best, I’m not here to be the best coach in the world, but to give the best for the team.
“If we win, they say we’re good, if we don’t win, they say the players don’t understand me, there’s drama. Everything depends on the outcome.”
Guardiola’s former charge at Barcelona, Pedro, has been heavily linked with a move to Manchester United, with Louis van Gaal admitting he would add a lot to the team.
And the 44-year-old believes that the winger is good enough to feature for any team in the world before discussing Bastian Schweinsteiger’s move to Old Trafford.
“There is no doubt about it. He is European champion for his country, with his team he is La Liga champion. He is champion of everything. When you play lots of matches for a team such as Barca you can play in any team in the world.
“He has played in lots of positions and I wish him well, he’s a good player and a good guy.”
“Schweinsteiger, if he doesn’t have any injury problems, I am convinced will triumph and play for Manchester United. It’s a shame that in the last two years he’s had several injuries and he was not 100 per cent.”