Transfer News: Pep Guardiola Snubs Chelsea, Manchester City, Joins Bayern Munich
Pep Guardiola is signed to coach German football club Bayern Munich for the 2013/2014 season (Photo: Reuters)
Former Barcelona manager Pep Guardiola has given a thumbs down to Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich, who was keen on signing the legendary manager after interim manager Rafael Benitez's short term came to an end.
Last night German club Bayern Munich announced that Guardiola has been signed as the manager of the club and will take over the reins at the end of the season this year.
The 41-year-old manager, who is currently on a sabbatical, had been strongly liked to Chelsea and Manchester City. Not to speak of the fact that he had even revealed that he was keen on managing in England.
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But the recent development has shocked all his English fans and Chelsea and City faithful. Guardiola has signed a three-year contract with Bayern that will tie him down at the club till 2016.
The Spaniard won 14 trophies with Barcelona including two Champions League titles during his stay at Camp Nou from 2008 to 2012.
"We are very pleased that we have managed to convince the football expert Pep Guardiola, who was coveted and contacted by many top clubs, to come to Bayern Munich," Bayern chief executive Karl-Heinz Rummenigge said.
"He is one of the most successful coaches in the world and we are sure that he can make not just Bayern, but all of German football shine."
Guardiola will take over from Jupp Heynckes who has decided to retire at the end of the season. The 67-year-old had informed the Munich club's bosses about his plans before Christmas.
Bayern, who are Bundesliga leaders, meet Arsenal in the Champions League last 16 in February.
Surprisingly, the news about Guardiola's joining Bayern Munich came the same day when the English FA broadcasted his interview to FATV in which he had said that he was keen on coaching in England.
"As a player, I couldn't realize my dream to play there. But I hope in the future, I have a challenge to be a coach or a manager there," Guardiola was quoted as in an interview to FATV.
The interview was shown as part of the celebrations to mark England FA's 150th anniversary.
Guardiola added that he has "always found English football very fascinating. It is unique, to play in that league."
"I want to feel the supporters, the environment, the media and the style of the players. I have always found English football fascinating. The support of the home team is amazing."
"In Italy, Latin people will support you when they are playing and when you lose, they kill you," he said.
"In England, I'm always surprised that people support everything. That is nice and why, maybe, as I am still young, just 41, I hope to have the challenge or the opportunity to train there."