Pep Guardiola is constantly evolving his methods and plays a style of football that is addictive to watch, according to Manchester City director of football Txiki Begiristain.
City announced on Thursday that the Catalan coach has agreed a new contract that will keep him at the Etihad Stadium until the end of the 2022-23 campaign.
Guardiola is into his fifth season at City – already his longest reign at any club – and has won two Premier League titles, three EFL Cups and the FA Cup.
The Champions League has so far eluded the 49-year-old but Begiristain, who also worked with Guardiola at Barcelona, insists his compatriot has defied all expectations.
“He has taken the club to the top level, the maximum you can get. We wanted to play this attractive football and of course to win and he has done both,” he told CityTV. “We have played unbelievable football and we have won.
“When you do 100 points in the Premier League – such a difficult league – and then in the next one, you have to do 98 to beat an unbelievable team like Liverpool by one… you want to see every weekend and every year the same.
— PepTeam (@PepTeam) November 19, 2020
“That kind of perfection you want to feel it every weekend. We have shown ambition since the first day and we have to show that and I can see how the players are working in the training sessions and the games.
“The future of this club is absolutely guaranteed with him and the players we have. He is always in a constant evolution so he is not the same as at Barcelona, he is not the same as at Bayern and he is not the same as his first season [at City].
“He is always evolving, changing and he shows that work to the players and the players are obeying him.”
Guardiola won a plethora of honours during his spells with Barcelona and Bayern Munich but Begiristain admits even he has been surprised by his close friend’s success at City to date, even accounting for an underwhelming 2019-20 campaign.
“It is unbelievable to do two season 198 points. I could see that he could do it but I didn’t expect such a big amount of points,” he said.
“I told him once when he was in Germany how difficult the Premier League is and you win with 85, 86, 87 points. With those points (100 and 98) even myself I thought it was impossible but he did it.”
12 – Manchester City’s tally of 12 points after seven league games in 2020/21 is the fewest ever collected by a team led by Pep Guardiola at this stage of a season. Renewed. #ManCity
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) November 19, 2020
City strengthened their squad during the transfer window with the arrivals of Ruben Dias, Nathan Ake and Ferran Torres, while Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi continues to be linked with a move.
Begiristain feels that City are in safe hands with Guardiola at the helm for a further two years due to his ability to get the most out of every player.
“We already have an unbelievable squad, we are very complete,” he said. “We have a lot of top players.
“The life of this club is always changing, there are some players asking to leave, there are players who think they should be playing more than the other ones.
“This is the natural life of a squad. What is good is having Pep is quite easy to convince the players to come, because we have to recognise as well that Pep makes the players better, so they can see an improvement. That helps to sign the players for us.
“We are showing the same ambition since the first day. We can show that. I can see how the players are running and working on the training sessions and on the games.
“So I’m very happy to see that and the future of the team is quality with him and the squad we have.”
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