Deco, Barcelona sporting director, has downplayed Pep Guardiola’s extraordinary success there.
Over a brilliant four-year period between 2008 and 2012, Guardiola led Barcelona to their greatest-ever era of success, winning three La Liga crowns, two Champions Leagues, and a total of 14 trophies. Deco, a current sporting director and former Barcelona player, has downplayed the accomplishments of the current Manchester City manager, stating that the groundwork had previously been set for his success.
“When he arrived at Barcelona people talked about a great revolution, which is a big lie,” Deco told La Vanguardia. “Ronaldinho and I left but there was Xavi, Andres Iiniesta, Sergio Busquets coming through, Yaya Toure, [Lionel] Messi of course, Samuel Eto’o. Guardiola was intelligent and when he arrived he imposed order and quality as a coach to build the best team I’ve seen in my life and he didn’t waste any time.”
Selling Deco and Ronaldinho was Guardiola’s top priority when he took over because he believed they may have a negative impact on the team, particularly Messi. Dani Alves arrived in the same summer that Deco and Ronaldinho were sold to Chelsea and AC Milan, respectively. Deco took over as sporting director of Barca last year.
Deco will now need to appoint a new manager for Barcelona, as Xavi declared his intention to stand down at the end of the current campaign. Guardiola left Barcelona in 2012, feeling depleted by the political climate around the team, and it seems improbable that he will desire to return to Camp Nou. His goal with City, who host Brentford on Monday, is to bring home more trophies.