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Guardiola aware of pressure to win Champions League

Pep Guardiola accepts his three-year spell as Bayern Munich manager will be judged on whether his team can win the Champions League before he leaves this summer.

Guardiola is desperate to win the Champions League in his final season. Credit: Reuters

The Spaniard, whose side are away to Atletico Madrid in the first leg of their Champions League semi-final on Wednesday night, is set to take over at Manchester City for next season.

Despite dominating the Bundesliga, with Guardiola's men on course to collect a third straight domestic title, success in Europe's elite club competition has so far proved illusive.

The German giants are aiming to avoid what would be elimination to a Spanish team at the same stage for three campaigns in a row.

Guardiola understands the demands of the job, which saw predecessor Jupp Heynckes deliver the 2013 Champions League with victory over Jurgen Klopp's Borussia Dortmund at Wembley.

Guardiola said:

In three years we have got to three semi-finals, but I know that people say if I don't win the Champions League my work won't be complete.

But I've been very lucky to have experienced what I have in Germany. I think I am a better coach, a better person, more relaxed.

– Bayern Munich manager Pep Guardiola


Guardiola will improve any team - Lewandowski

Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski believes outgoing manager Pep Guardiola will improve any team he chooses to take over in the Premier League.

Last month the Spaniard confirmed he would be standing down as head coach at the end of the campaign after three successful years in the Bundesliga to pursue a career in England.

Pep Guardiola is leaving Bayern. Credit: PA

Manchester City are thought to be leading the chase for his services while Chelsea and Manchester United have also been linked with the Catalan.

"I know Pep can improve a team in England," the Poland international told the Mail on Sunday. "I think he knows where he's going and he knows what he needs to do with the team he's going to, so that they play much better.

"He will focus on technique and perhaps more possession than is the norm in England. But Pep knows the Premier League is different from the Spanish league or the Bundesliga. I'm sure he can do something new in terms of tactics and technique."


Guardiola revealed exit plans at Bayern Munich party

Bayern Munich chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge admits he had known for a fortnight that Pep Guardiola was going to leave the German giants next summer.

Guardiola is looking for a new challenge in football. Credit: PA

Guardiola's departure at the end of his contract in June was confirmed by the Bavarian club on Sunday, although the announcement hardly came as a surprise with speculation rife that the Spaniard would be leaving.

And Rummenigge has revealed he knew what was coming weeks ago, telling Germany's Bild newspaper:

He came over to me two weeks ago at our Christmas party and told me that he was looking for a new challenge. He was almost apologetic. I'm not disappointed in him.

You could read between the lines and that was something that we should have interpreted. We did take note of it, but we just wanted to give him time to make up his mind in peace.

– Bayern Munich chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge

Sammer praises Guardiola for 'positive craziness'

Bayern Munich's director of sport Matthias Sammer feels Pep Guardiola has been treated unfairly by the media, because of his success.

Sammer is a big fan of Guardiola, who is leaving Bayern next summer. Credit: PA

It was announced on Sunday that the Catalan would be leaving Bayern at the end of the season when his contract expires.

The 44-year-old has won back-to-back Bundesliga titles and is on course for a third straight league success, but his methods have been the source of debate.

Sammer told Sky Sport Deutschland:

In Germany we always have the feeling that when somebody's getting so much praise, then there has got to be another extreme and they've got to be brought down somehow.

What he has achieved, also for German football, is extraordinary and we've got to recognise that. We have got to bring an end to seeing negatively somebody who works so painstakingly, as if tomorrow never comes.

In recent days, Pep's come off far too badly. What he does with his hard work, his dedication and his positive craziness can be discussed, but it cannot ever be questioned.

– Bayern Munich Director of Sport Matthias Sammer

Guardiola's agent in the dark over Bayern coach's future

The agent of Bayern Munich coach Pep Guardiola admits he has no idea what the Catalan has in mind for his future.

Guardiola's contract is up for renewal next summer and he has been linked with a move to Manchester City from next season.

Bayern's chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge suggested at the weekend that a decision - one way or another - would be made before the Bundesliga's winter break.

Guardiola has been linked with a move to England. Credit: PA

But Guardiola's agent Josep Maria Orobitg has told Munich's Tz newspaper that he does not know what that decision is going to be.

"Not even I know what Pep's intentions are," Orobitg said.

"We've had some intensive talks in the past few days, but when it comes to things like this, he's very private.

"He will make up his mind entirely based on his own impressions."

Guardiola has led Bayern to back-to-back Bundesliga titles, while they are five points clear at the top with a third of the current campaign gone.

Orobitg said Guardiola is "very happy" in Munich but added: "At the end of the day, it is a decision he is going to take by himself.

"One thing is for sure, however, and that is everybody around him will accept his decision, no matter what it is."

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