The worst kept secret in football, that Pep Guardiola will be taking over at Manchester City at the end of the season, came spilling out in the form of an official club press release this week and the reaction across English football has been interesting to say the least.
On one hand you have Manchester City supporters, on the whole, celebrating the announcement with even the warring Gallagher Brothers, formerly of Oasis, in agreement for once over something and letting it be known over social media that this is a momentous capture for City.
The reaction, as expected, from other clubs was mixed, with a lot of opinions about the appointment swirling around on Social Media. While some fans of City's rivals adopted a defeatist tone, feeling that Pep's arrival at the Etihad will kick off an era of dominance for the Blues and we may as well give them the EPL trophy for next season now, others meanwhile were quick to point out that he's never been in a league as competitive as the Premier League and may get found out.
We talked to a few of the usual suspects of the FootyFair Roundable for their take on the move:
AC: The incessant grinding of the "every Bayern player going to the Etihad" rumour mill is likely going to take years off my life.
Iain: Pep joining another team with tonnes of cash and a ready made setup that ensures he won't have to do any rebuilding. Typical.
Juanito: They obviously want to win the CL. (Current manager Manuel) Pellegrini is a good manager, his European record withstanding. Manchester will remain blue for a while longer.
Iain: I don't think Pep will find things as easy in the EPL though. You can debate the quality, or lack thereof in England, but the fact is that the teams at the bottom put up a real battle every time out. He won't be spanking side's in the lower half 5-0 each week.
AC: I think this goes beyond "tonnes of cash" into the realm of "almost limitless amounts of cash". Guardiola is a very good manager but I can't say he's very popular in Munich.
Juanito: I'm not sure his style will work in England. We'll find out soon enough.
Luka: Most overrated football manager ever.
Juanito: I respectfully disagree Luka. He's proven he can win. However, I will concede that there is a myth surrounding him.
Luka: So has every Barça manager since. He inherited the best club in the world and turned them into ONE of the best clubs in the world.
Juanito: No, that's not true. He inherited an underachieving team, cleaned house, brought a new way of seeing the game, and made them what they are today. Every manager has continued his style, more or less.
Iain: He did achieve some great things, no doubt. But he had a side at Barcelona containing Messi, Xavi, Puyol, Eto'o, Pique, and Iniesta, he would have had to have been completely inept not to win with that group. With both of his jobs he's never had to rebuild anything.
Bramble: Over hyped overrated overpaid will be exposed when Shitty lose to Palace or someone. Not all leagues have only 2 or in his current case 1 team.
AC: I think the Bundesliga as a one team league is irrelevant in this specific case. The goal for Guardiola at Bayern was never the league. It was the Champions League.
Luka: And he failed spectacularly.
AC: Well two straight semi-finals isn't a spectacular failure...albeit the way in which his sides went out can be categorized as such.
Bramble: None the less his league form is adding to his "legend" if there was a few more teams with the funds and the backing you'd see how poor this guy actually is.
AC: The teams that should be competing with us (Werder, Stuttgart, HSV) have been colossal failures due to their own ineptitude.
Bramble: And the loss of german hipster to Liverpoop has decreased BVB as well.
AC: I can agree with that, at the very least partially. Klopp failed to adapt his own system in the league and that lead to Dortmund being left way behind. Well that and the colossal amount of injuries they suffered, which might be attributed to the Gegenpressing system. I mean look at Liverpool currently!
Iain: Bramble is going to hate this, and I may even hate myself a bit for saying it, but I actually like Klopp. His pressing system, when it's working, can be brutally effective and I actually like his enthusiasm. I'd rather have someone like him than that useless dinosaur scrotum faced cunt LVG, currently writing his memoirs on our bench.
Bramble: I don't hate Klopp as much as I hate the idea of him managing the most annoying club in the world.
Hawk: You can put a blind donkey on the teams Pep was on, and they'd almost certainly win.
Bramble: I agree 110% any one of us here could go to Barca or Bayern when he was there and say "alright doods just go out and play however you want" and we'd still get the same results.
AC: I should probably be clear on my stance on Guardiola. At the time he was announced, I had mixed feelings. Any time a new manager comes along, especially one with so much fanfare attached to it, the expectations that are placed upon the team increase a hundredfold. I liked what he did on the pitch and there were real successes, Champions League notwithstanding.
However, looking back on it...I feel a little spurned. His move to England at this particular time feels to me that he used Bayern as a stepping stone to his ultimate goal of managing in the Premier League - with all of the fanfare and prestige that accompanies it. I feel a little defensive about the whole thing. Using my club to pad your CV....get outta here!
So looking at him solely as Bayern manager, I am not unappreciative. But looking at the big picture has me more than a little bitter about the whole thing.
I wanted to believe that there was some sort of altruism in his move from Barca to Bayern. Meeting a new challenge and stuff. Should have my head examined for thinking that kinda nonsense.
Bramble: He is a merc and the worst kind of merc, it's fitting he's going to "Shitty".
Iain: It's weird though, as he could have gone to England right after his sabbatical and not gone to Bayern at all. Both United and Chelsea had vacancies coming up in the summer of 2013, and likely would have hired him.
It feels like he took Bayern as an easy option, after his pressure cooker battles with Mourinho in La Liga, seeing them as a place to scoop up a few titles with minimum fuss before taking on the challenge of coming to England.
Bramble: Yeah, and if he went to Chelsea or us though he'd be exposed as someone who can't rebuild a team.