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The Toe Poke
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Let players help with language, Pep told

Pep Guardiola has been advised to let Bayern Munich's players help him with his language skills as he prepares to take his first training session in front of an expected 25,000 crowd.

• Pep lives up to hype
• Backed to succeed
• Pep Guardiola profile
• Schaaf: Pep is ready

Guardiola - who delivered much of his first press conference as Bayern coach in German - will take the public session at the Allianz Arena.

Fans have paid €5 each for tickets to the event - moved from the training pitches because of the overwhelming demand - with the proceeds going to victims of the recent flooding in Germany.

Former Bayern and Barcelona coach Luis van Gaal told Algemeen Dagblad mastering the language would be "a crucial factor" for Guardiola. "German is very difficult to learn for a Spaniard," he said. "He should ask the players to help him out."

Guardiola told Bayern's TV channel he still had a lot to learn, adding: "I need some more time before I am able to communicate well. I hope that in six months my German will be a lot better."

But former Arsenal and Germany goalkeeper Jens Lehman gave Guardiola credit for his German, telling TZ: "Impressive! He speaks German fluently".

However, Lehmann said he believed Guardiola was "going to be disappointed, because the Bundesliga will be no real challenge for him".

Former Bayern coach Ottmar Hitzfeld said the only way Guardiola could top the club's Treble success last season would be "by winning the FIFA Club World Cup".

He explained: "Bayern is already the best team in Europe, and they will remain on top. There is no other club with a better chance to win titles in the upcoming years."

Bayern star Javi Martinez said he believed Guardiola could improve the team still further, saying: "We will learn a lot [from him]. All the Barcelona players told me he is an excellent coach."

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