Pep Guardiola has suggested he would be happy to leave Bayern Munich after just one season if the club’s hierarchy are not happy with his work.
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Guardiola has been an instant hit in Munich, winning the Bundesliga trophy in record time, qualifying for the German Cup final and also guiding the team into the upcoming Champions League semifinals where they will meet Real Madrid.
However, the patient passing style of play which the former Barcelona coach favours has not been fully welcomed by all at the Allianz Arena, with former player and manager -- and now honorary president -- Franz Beckenbauer recently having to row back on comments he made about finding the team “unwatchable.”
Asked about the latest criticism of his methods at a news conference on Wednesday, Guardiola told reporters that he found some of the negativity hard to take and was prepared to move on if the club wanted a change.
“I have to accept the criticism,” Guardiola said. “I tell myself 'Pep, calm down'. You are here to work as well as possible, and my best talent is work, work, work. I am here to help the club, and if the club do not want me, a handshake and no problem for me.”
The quotes were made in English, and mostly missed by the local German reports, while Catalan paper Mundo Deportivo picked them up but did point out that Guardiola was talking "without bitterness or tension."
Nonetheless the possibility of the former Blaugrana hero becoming free again in the summer has had quite an impact in Spain. Especially with Gerardo Martino likely to leave following quick exits from all three major competitions, and ex-Barca player and coach Johan Cruyff suggesting that a returning ‘Pep’ is the only person now capable of halting the slide into mediocrity.