Pep Guardiola will take over as Manchester City head coach at the end of the season – here are 10 facts you may not know about the Spaniard.
The Spaniard, who has enjoyed great success as a coach with Barcelona and Bayern Munich, will succeed Manuel Pellegrini at the Etihad Stadium on a three-year contract.
Here, we lists 10 things you may not know about the 45-year-old, who had also been linked with Manchester United and Chelsea.
1. As a youngster doing ball-boy duties, Guardiola was once refused an autograph by Michel Platini, when offered a poster of the Frenchman which had adorned Guardiola’s childhood wall.
2. Guardiola is an art lover, and spent much of his sabbatical in New York – after leaving Barcelona – around the galleries of the Big Apple.
3. Guardiola’s clothing has made headlines in the past. He wore a T-shirt in a pre-match press conference last season ahead of the Champions League clash against Porto carrying a slogan promoting a campaign for justice surrounding the death of an Argentinian journalist. Guardiola then celebrated Bayern’s come-from-behind victory over Porto just that little bit too much, causing a noticeable tear down one side of his trousers. He has famous company on that front at least in David Moyes and Jose Mourinho.
4. Speaking of clothes, Guardiola’s relationship with wife Cristina Serra grew around the latter’s family clothes shop in Manresa, in Spain’s north-east.
5. A love of smart clothes naturally translates to a love of…. golf. A keen player, Guardiola attended the 2012 ‘Miracle in Medinah’ on the invitation of Europe’s Ryder Cup captain and compatriot Jose Maria Olazabal.
6. Aside from his playing career in Europe, Guardiola spent time with Al Ahly of Qatar and then Dorados de Sinaloa of Mexico, which proved his swansong.
7. Guardiola does not conduct one-on-one interviews – only press conferences.
8. Guardiola is from the small Catalan town of Santpedor in north-east Spain. In honour of Guardiola’s achievements, the home ground of local team CF Santpedor was given the name Camp Municipal Josep Guardiola.
9. The municipal council also named Guardiola their “favourite son of the town” in October 2009.
10. When preparing for life in Germany, Guardiola reportedly spent hours with a German teacher while in New York. He gave parts of his first Bayern Munich press conference in German.