Guardiola: I left Barcelona because I could not motivate players any more... and defeat by Chelsea was the final straw

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Guardiola: I left Barcelona because I could not motivate players any more... and defeat by Chelsea was the final straw

Post by Winter is Coming on Wed Mar 19, 2014 3:53 pm

Pep Guardiola recalled on Wednesday how a defeat against Chelsea prompted him to end his reign as Barcelona’s most successful coach when he could no longer motivate the star players.

“If you can no longer reach your players, as a coach, the time has come to move on,” Guardiola said in a rare opening up about his departure from the Spanish giants.
The current Bayern Munich maestro said that defeats are “moments of great sadness” like when “the floodlights suddenly go out.”

“Seeing Barcelona go out against Chelsea in the Champions League semi final in 2012 was just such a moment.

“We were better than our opponents, but then conceded an unnecessary goal in the return leg, and before we knew it we were out of the competition.

“That was a really tough defeat for me. I felt like I could no longer reach my team,” Guardiola said in an interview included in the Audi car company’s annual report.
A 90th minute goal by Fernando Torres in the second leg at Barcelona earned a 3-2 aggregate win for Chelsea in the landmark semi-final.

Guardiola said the defeat prompted his decision to end his four years in charge of Barcelona, during which they won 14 trophies including two Champions League titles. He was the first Barcelona coach to beat arch-rivals Real Madrid four times in a row.
Barcelona were “incredibly successful,” he said. “Fourteen titles with the space of just four years meant it was the best period in the club’s history.

“But it can also be a curse. I found it increasingly difficult to motivate both myself and my team.”

Guardiola had won everything at Barcelona as a player and a coach.

“I noticed that the team was finding it increasingly difficult. Leading a team takes huge amounts of energy. In other words, there are times when you need to recharge your batteries,” added Guardiola, who took a sabbatical with his family in New York before joining Bayern in 2013.

Guardiola, 43, said he would not have been able to build the current European champion side in Munich without the Bosman ruling in 1995 that enable players to pick and choose their clubs across Europe.

But he added that there are also drawbacks to having a multinational team of football geniuses.

“With so many stars in the line-up, as we currently have at FC Bayern Munich or my former club in Barcelona, you may also come across situations where diversity can be destructive,” he said.

The pressure for a starting place can be intolerable, he said.

“The ones left on the substitutes’ bench are most likely to be the ones who aren’t happy with my decision. And then there’s the pressure from the press and the fans to select particular players.

“Whenever I left Lionel Messi on the bench for example, the whole of Barcelona was in uproar,” Guardiola said

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Re: Guardiola: I left Barcelona because I could not motivate players any more... and defeat by Chelsea was the final straw

Post by futbol on Wed Mar 19, 2014 11:39 pm

And then people blame Martino that he can't motivate the exact same squad but 2 years older. Laughing

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Re: Guardiola: I left Barcelona because I could not motivate players any more... and defeat by Chelsea was the final straw

Post by The Franchise on Wed Mar 19, 2014 11:57 pm

According to Pep himself, the reason he couldnt motivate them was because consciously or subconsciously, they were tired of hearing HIM.

Tata has nothing to do with it. To say these players arent motivated to win is a cheap and lazy cop out.

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Re: Guardiola: I left Barcelona because I could not motivate players any more... and defeat by Chelsea was the final straw

Post by futbol on Thu Mar 20, 2014 12:19 am

Overinterpreting. If the players can't get motivated by hearing Pep anymore, a club legend who is known for being a tremendous motivator and an idol for the likes of Iniesta since childhood, then no one can motivate them. If you get bored by Pep then what's an unknown outsider from Argentina going to do?

If you think players that have won multiple Champions Leagues, La Ligas, Copas, all kind of Supercups and even Euro Cups and a World Cup with the national team, are going to show the same enthusiasm on a warm afternoon against Valladolid in their twilight years as they would have in 2008 when they were nobodies, you are trippin'. That's not a cheap excuse. It's reality. The cheap excuse is to blame this on the manager when the same players that lost 0-1 to a relegation candidate wins 7-0 only 1 week later against a similar opponent.

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Re: Guardiola: I left Barcelona because I could not motivate players any more... and defeat by Chelsea was the final straw

Post by neuro11 on Thu Mar 20, 2014 2:03 am

Fußball wrote:Overinterpreting. If the players can't get motivated by hearing Pep anymore, a club legend who is known for being a tremendous motivator and an idol for the likes of Iniesta since childhood, then no one can motivate them. If you get bored by Pep then what's an unknown outsider from Argentina going to do?

If you think players that have won multiple Champions Leagues, La Ligas, Copas, all kind of Supercups and even Euro Cups and a World Cup with the national team, are going to show the same enthusiasm on a warm afternoon against Valladolid in their twilight years as they would have in 2008 when they were nobodies, you are trippin'. That's not a cheap excuse. It's reality. The cheap excuse is to blame this on the manager when the same players that lost 0-1 to a relegation candidate wins 7-0 only 1 week later against a similar opponent.

Partly true.
Pep could not motivate them because they won everything under pep. Pep might be a great tactician, that does not mean that he created variety everyday. our overall strategy was same. their could not be done anything more to nurture this. Its like asking you to do the math using same technique and after sometime you feel you already know this. Players were at that stage - probably. A new coach, new technique, new strategy - you might ignore but in most cases it works.
With that being said, probably changing the coach is not enough. since majority of the starters had been playing long together winning everything, winning every big matches out there, gaining every praise, every word from the media. and mostly the same starters. probably it is nearly impossible to motivate them here in Barca. For this reason, i think Tata had greater influence on certain players such as Alexis,Pedro,Cesc (if any) than others like Messi, Xavi, Iniesta.
But during the game of Vallodid i too felt the problem more deep inside than the coach and felt a major number of winners would better be replaced (hate to say this though). I felt i am not enjoying Barca anymore- the character the willpower simply was not there....

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Re: Guardiola: I left Barcelona because I could not motivate players any more... and defeat by Chelsea was the final straw

Post by futbol on Thu Mar 20, 2014 2:34 am

I think Pep tried everything he could. Including 3-4-3, 3-1-3-3, integrating Alexis into the squad, playing Alexis infront of Messi, integrating 2 new players like Thiago and Fabregas into midfield, promoting Tello and Cuenca etc. It still felt like only Messi won us games on his own and overall it was Pep's worst season ever. We had the same amount of points in La Liga in his last season as we do now and Madrid beat us in Camp Nou and should have beaten us in the Copa del Rey (don't know how they missed 500 chances). Since then the squad has actually regressed. No Thiago, no Abidal, no Puyol (practically) and Xavi is 34 now. In 2012 he could still pull off something like the Euro Cup final. Now in 2014? I doubt it. Maybe with 2 weeks rest between games. So it's hard for me to blame the coach for the inconsistencies when the management hasn't invested anything in the squad and we've actually gone backwards. Our bench in most games is Tello, Sergi Roberto, Song, Montoya, Pinto. That's awful.

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Re: Guardiola: I left Barcelona because I could not motivate players any more... and defeat by Chelsea was the final straw

Post by Winter is Coming on Thu Mar 20, 2014 3:49 am

In 2012, Abidal, Puyol, Pedro were in and out of injury. It was Alexis and Cesc first season with us who were still trying to get a hold of our style of play. We didn't have Song/Alba for depth purposes, or Neymar. Not to mention Villa was out for almost the entire season as well. We didn't have depth that season at all.

I also believe theres obviously more to this story then just whats written. I'm sure when the rumour begin of Pep wanting to sell Pique/Cesc/Alves were actually true. He probably couldn't see a future with them, but he probably won't say anything right now about it. It began with him saying he was tired, now to not being able to motivate the players. Even Alves said it that Pep said to them the day they stop responding to him is the day he leaves.

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Re: Guardiola: I left Barcelona because I could not motivate players any more... and defeat by Chelsea was the final straw

Post by windkick on Thu Mar 20, 2014 3:54 am

I agree mostly with what Fuboll is saying

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Re: Guardiola: I left Barcelona because I could not motivate players any more... and defeat by Chelsea was the final straw

Post by Doc on Thu Mar 20, 2014 4:52 am

Not gonna lie, Futbol is definitely my favourite poster and one of the best (IMO) Barce-centric posters to do their thing on this lovely forum. And if I were a Cule, I would have cursed his ass out long time for being a pessimistic little sh*t.

Can't help but agree with him too. If Pep had trouble motivating these men, who mind you, looked up to him as a club legend and most likely a mentor and father-esque figure, how exactly is Tata gonna accomplish such a task? A task made more apparent by his interesting tactical differences (you guys would know it so I don't think I need to go on that one) and the fact he is a "nobody" in the European footballing scene.

I personally find these guys could and should be able to motivate themselves when playing those afternoon matches in Gijon, Valladolid, Granada since what is more addictive than winning. Yup, more winning but that's just my point of view on professional footballers.


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Re: Guardiola: I left Barcelona because I could not motivate players any more... and defeat by Chelsea was the final straw

Post by The Franchise on Thu Mar 20, 2014 1:06 pm

Fußball wrote:Overinterpreting. If the players can't get motivated by hearing Pep anymore, a club legend who is known for being a tremendous motivator and an idol for the likes of Iniesta since childhood, then no one can motivate them. If you get bored by Pep then what's an unknown outsider from Argentina going to do?

If you think players that have won multiple Champions Leagues, La Ligas, Copas, all kind of Supercups and even Euro Cups and a World Cup with the national team, are going to show the same enthusiasm on a warm afternoon against Valladolid in their twilight years as they would have in 2008 when they were nobodies, you are trippin'. That's not a cheap excuse. It's reality. The cheap excuse is to blame this on the manager when the same players that lost 0-1 to a relegation candidate wins 7-0 only 1 week later against a similar opponent.

Because it doesnt matter who is speaking, you cant listen to the same voice in year 4 the same way you did in year 1. There is only so many times you can hear the same message.

If Tata doesnt command the respect to be heard, then thats on him.

Obviously the players have won alot and arent 20 year old rookies anymore, but that doesnt excuse Martino of all privileges.

And lets be real here, name the players who arent motivated.

I bet you cant name no more than 3 or 4. Anyone else either hasnt really won/done anything to warrant a lack of motivation (Alba, Alexis, Cesc, Song and others) or they are truly self motivated and show great passion to win (Dani Alves, Iniesta).

So, name the guys. Pique? Who else?
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Re: Guardiola: I left Barcelona because I could not motivate players any more... and defeat by Chelsea was the final straw

Post by futbol on Thu Mar 20, 2014 2:02 pm

@The Franchise wrote:
Fußball wrote:Overinterpreting. If the players can't get motivated by hearing Pep anymore, a club legend who is known for being a tremendous motivator and an idol for the likes of Iniesta since childhood, then no one can motivate them. If you get bored by Pep then what's an unknown outsider from Argentina going to do?

If you think players that have won multiple Champions Leagues, La Ligas, Copas, all kind of Supercups and even Euro Cups and a World Cup with the national team, are going to show the same enthusiasm on a warm afternoon against Valladolid in their twilight years as they would have in 2008 when they were nobodies, you are trippin'. That's not a cheap excuse. It's reality. The cheap excuse is to blame this on the manager when the same players that lost 0-1 to a relegation candidate wins 7-0 only 1 week later against a similar opponent.

Because it doesnt matter who is speaking, you cant listen to the same voice in year 4 the same way you did in year 1. There is only so many times you can hear the same message.

If Tata doesnt command the respect to be heard, then thats on him.

Obviously the players have won alot and arent 20 year old rookies anymore, but that doesnt excuse Martino of all privileges.

And lets be real here, name the players who arent motivated.

I bet you cant name no more than 3 or 4. Anyone else either hasnt really won/done anything to warrant a lack of motivation (Alba, Alexis, Cesc, Song and others) or they are truly self motivated and show great passion to win (Dani Alves, Iniesta).

So, name the guys. Pique? Who else?

Well, it's hard to point to a single player and say he's unmotivated. Even in Pique's case that would be unfair I guess, I think he's just not good enough. Laughing I don't think we have a persisting motivation problem like that. No one in the squad is doing a Ronaldinho so to speak. But the enthusiasm, wanting to prove to the world that they are the best, that last bit of fighting spirit, that is certainly not there. The players might still be 90 % motivated but sometimes you need 101 %, that extra edge. If I look at Atletico Madrid I see a team fighting for their lives, playing like it is a Cup final week in week out, overachieving to some extend. Their squad shouldn't be good enough to compete with Barca and Real Madrid in La Liga and in direct encounters toe-to-toe but they do. No way this current Barca team plays with the same hunger, because if we did, with the quality we have, we'd smash everyone 5-0. Last season we didn't have a single shot on target in San Siro if I'm not mistaken. Then at home, with back against the wall, we smash them 4-0. Difference in attitude, nothing else. Same now. 0-1 Valladolid. 7-0 Osasuna. Only 1 week between the 2 games.

Surely you have to agree that this is a natural process. The first time you have sex you ejaculate all over the girl's face after 15 seconds, even when she's midtable looking. And it doesn't matter. After a 5 second break you just continue. Again and again and again, until you have a sore stick. 10 years later you still have a passion for sex but that sort of overenthusiasm is gone, especially when it's an average-looking girl. Then it takes you much longer and not so many times at one time. Unless a big gun like Olivia Wilde knocks on your door. Then you show glimpses of your youthfulness and hit it until you can't breath. This is how I would draw the parallel with Barca's poor form against scrubs and good form against big teams this season compared to the past.

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Re: Guardiola: I left Barcelona because I could not motivate players any more... and defeat by Chelsea was the final straw

Post by BarcaLearning on Thu Mar 20, 2014 4:49 pm

I fully believe Pep that this was the major reason, there must be other factors as well but. Keeps makes me wonder how Fergie does what he did... 20+years of motivating players and success. I think partly is Fergie was also lucky to have had players like Giggs. Hes 40 and starts a CL game and assists 2 goals to drag MAn U through from 2 goal deficit.
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Re: Guardiola: I left Barcelona because I could not motivate players any more... and defeat by Chelsea was the final straw

Post by Winter is Coming on Thu Mar 20, 2014 4:58 pm

Fergie was given a lot of control in United, which he wouldn't have gotten if he was coaching Barcelona, RM, or Bayern and he'd probably not even last more then 4 years at those clubs. He had a good job with what he had, but the squad answered to him unfortunately for these clubs its not just about winning, but winning i style and the stuff Fergie been through at United if he went through those here he'd be shown the door.

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Re: Guardiola: I left Barcelona because I could not motivate players any more... and defeat by Chelsea was the final straw

Post by The Franchise on Thu Mar 20, 2014 9:09 pm

OK, but that never lasts long. That desperation never lasts long with any team, with people in general in life even.

Overall, your post is fine, I agree with it.

But I think your overall point is a little over done. You seem to have the mindset that it's ok and not up to Martino when the team shows the attitude it does vs Valladolid for example. Its not ok and acceptable, Martino cant skate by from performances like that based on what some of the squad have done 3 years ago and more.
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Re: Guardiola: I left Barcelona because I could not motivate players any more... and defeat by Chelsea was the final straw

Post by futbol on Fri Mar 21, 2014 12:44 am

The coach is never blameless. At the end of the day he is in charge and therefore responsible. But let's say I have sympathy for him because I've seen what happened in Pep's last season (losing countless away games and looking sluggish), I've seen us under Tito (getting embarrassed by any half decent team, couldn't even muster a shot on target at home against PSG with mighty Beckham in midfield, until Messi came on). This is still the same team that has been assembled in 2008: Valdes, Pique, Alves, Busquets, Xavi, Iniesta, Messi. Still the same core. Look at other teams in Europe. Madrid in 2008 were starting games with Raul, Gutti, Gago, Metzelder, Heinze, Diarra, Robben, van der Vaart, Huntelaar. Bayern had Butt, Demichelis, Luca Toni, Lucio, van Bommel, Podolski etc. We haven't refreshed AT ALL since then. I mean we have replaced Abidal with Alba, Puyol with Mascherano and Eto'o with Alexis Sanchez Laughing but the core of the team is exactly the same. All things considered it's miraculous we're still competing this well with this squad IMO.

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Re: Guardiola: I left Barcelona because I could not motivate players any more... and defeat by Chelsea was the final straw

Post by jibers on Fri Mar 21, 2014 9:25 am

I've read Messi's book and Pep pretty much says the same thing. Most teams have a 3 year cycle and either the team has to be refreshed or the manager has to change. It was always inevitable. Also Messi became a problem for him. How do you sit there and instruct someone who has scored 70+ goals? Same thing SAF found with Ronaldo. Sometimes, there are players who are just bigger than the managers, there is nothing that can be done about it.

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Re: Guardiola: I left Barcelona because I could not motivate players any more... and defeat by Chelsea was the final straw

Post by BarcaLearning on Fri Mar 21, 2014 2:37 pm

Agree with everyone has a point. Comparing Fergie at Man U with Pep @ Barca regarding if the club lets the manager have power and long term, I think Pep should be given that, since he is Barca through and through, apart from the president politics thing and the player power thing that could have been factors, or whatever else, it remains true that the reason state in the topic is the main one.

Messi doesnt come across as a guy who likes to have too much player power and authorative or disobedient though, that he just got too big to manage or motivate. So Im not convinced that Pep in the end had problems with Messi.
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