Yesterday I predicted that Pep Guardiola was going to join Man City. I thought my views were well informed given his recent comments about wanting to manage in England, and having looked at the likely clubs in the Premiership I was pretty pleased with my analysis.
Last night I got home from work to hear that Guardiola is confirmed as Bayern Munich boss –
The former Barcelona coach, who is on a year-long sabbatical in Manhattan after leaving Camp Nou last summer, has agreed a three-year deal with the Bundesliga club and will replace Jupp Heynckes on 1 July.
The Catalan will become the highest-earning manager in the club’s history – it has been mooted that he struck a separate sponsorship deal with Adidas, Bayern’s kit supplier – at around €10m (£8.3m) a year, a figure he might have eclipsed at any of his other suitors, with Chelsea having made their admiration clear last March and in the summer.
Yet Guardiola appears to have been attracted by the similarities between Bayern and Barça, both of whom thrive essentially on bringing players through their youth system and relying on their managers to oversee the first-team set-up, with others charged with recruitment.
The deal with Bayern was signed before Christmas and confirmed on Wednesday. Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, the Bayern Munich CEO said:
“Pep Guardiola is one of the most successful coaches in the world. We are sure that he can make not just Bayern but all of German football shine. We are very pleased that we have managed to convince someone who was coveted and contacted by many top clubs to come to Bayern.”
Heynckes, who had steered Bayern to a nine-point lead in the Bundesliga at the start of the winter break – in his third spell at the club – had already indicated his intention to retire when his contract expires on 30 June. Uli Hoeness the Bayern Munich chairman said:
“Only someone of the calibre of coach Pep Guardiola could be considered an adequate replacement for Jupp Heynckes”