Pep Guardiola is one of the best managers in the world right now. He is known for his tactics and style of play and also for winning trophies everywhere he goes.
Apart from all that, he is also praised for bringing up young talent and moulding them into World Class players. Lionel Messi, Sergio Busquets, Pedro, Leroy sane etc are a few examples.
However, there are a few players who hate him for almost ruining their careers. Here are 5 such footballers who hate Pep Guardiola:
Dante and Jerome Boateng were turning out to be one of the deadliest defensive duos in the world. They conceded just 15 goals in the Bundesliga when they played together and there were high hopes on them – especially after winning the treble under Jupp Heynckes.
However, when Pep Guardiola came in, he pushed Dante out of the team. Reason? He made a silly error in the Spaniard’s first game in charge of the German side and that lead to an own goal.
“He doesn’t speak to you so as a player you don’t know where you stand. There are coaches who are world-class from a tactical point of view, but who aren’t good on a human level and this is the case with Guardiola.” said the Brazilian defender.
Hleb was one of Guardiola’s first ever signings at Barcelona. He was rarely used by the manager during the first half of the season and in March 2009, Hleb decided that he didn’t want to rot on the bench at Camp Nou.
“I was always fighting with Guardiola. I didn’t use to listen to him, he would say to take Spanish classes to integrate myself into the team, but I wouldn’t do them,” he told Catalunya Radio.
“[Pep and I] would shout at each other. He expected one thing from me and I wouldn’t do it and the way with which I would say ‘no’ was like a child. My judgment was clouded and I ignored him.”added the player.
He was eventually loaned to Stuttgart, Birmingham City, and Wolfsburg before he joined Krylia Sovetov Samara on a permanent deal.
Yaya Toure was touted as one of the best defensive midfielders during his time at Olympiacos. Barcelona swooped in and signed him up but a year later, when Guardiola arrived, he preferred to start with Sergio Busquets.
That left the Ivorian felt like an outcast and he started to look for a move away from Camp Nou. Finally, when he got an offer from Manchester City, Guardiola decided to speak to him but it was little too late and Toure made the switch.
Six years later, the ‘feud’ continued at Etihad too. Toure was abandoned from the squad by Guardiola on his arrival and was insisting that midfielder and his agent apologised to him for their comment about him.
Samuel Eto’o has been one of the most outspoken footballers of all time. He has spoken his mind about everything and has made it clear that he dislikes Guardiola.
The manager was not willing to keep Eto’o at the club despite him being a vital member of the starting XI. The Cameroonian somehow kept his place in the team and impressed in Guardiola’s first season too.
Despite all that, he was used in the deal to land Zlatan Ibrahimovic in the summer. Eto’o and Guardiola came face-to-face again when Inter Milan took on Barcelona in the Champions League group stage.
“He shook hands with me when I was at Inter and I played against Barca, but this was just for the cameras and TV. Behind the scenes before the match, he did not greet me,” said Eto’o.
Tim Hanlon, the author of the Barcelona book ‘A Catalan Dream’, wrote:
“Eto’o had been a key player for Barca, but at the same time there were divisions in the dressing room and Eto’o felt that he wasn’t getting the praise he deserved. He famously came out with the quote that if he was called Etodinho then he would have won the Ballon d’Or. Guardiola and Eto’o never had a particularly good relationship as Pep didn’t like his outspoken personality, and that was the reason why he was sold.”
“Guardiola was staring at me and I lost it. I thought ‘there is my enemy, scratching his bald head!’. I yelled to him: ‘You have no balls!’ and probably worse things than that.” “You are sh*tting yourself because of Jose Mourinho. You can go to hell!” those famous quoted by Zlatan Ibrahimovic are enough to show how much the Swede hates Guardiola.
Ibrahimovic was one of the deadliest strikers when Barcelona signed him. Guardiola however, opted to play with Messi up front in mid-season and this did not go down well with Zlatan.
Speaking to Sky Italy, Zlatan said:
“The first six months were perfect, then the manager changed system, tactics and it didn’t work for me. I went to talk to him. I’m here to talk, if you think it’s for another reason then we can’t talk. I said: ‘I believe that you are sacrificing some players for one player, Messi’. He said: ‘I don’t think this is the case but I understand what you say. I will take care of it, no problem, I will solve everything’. I thought it would be OK.”
“The following game I was on the bench. I don’t say anything, I work. Second match bench again. I thought he solved it well and he was not talking to me or explaining. Third match bench. Then the fourth match comes and bench again. I think something is strange. From that moment he stopped talking to me, looking at me. I go into a room and he walks out of it. He was not a bad person, but the most immature I’ve had because a man solves his problems.” added Ibrahimovic.
Barcelona’s former corporate vice-president Carles Vilarrubi, also confirmed that Zlatan forced them to sell him by threatening to hit the manager in front of the press. “He threatened to beat Guardiola in public. He said ‘if you do not let me go I will paste him in front of the press'”. said Carles.