Barcelona manager Pep Guardiola, walking away far too early, will be back. Somewhere. Sometime.
For now, apparently, he was simply out of petrol.
Is it really a surprise that such a perfectionist, a man so preternaturally demanding of himself and everyone around him, would flame out? Here’s what Xavi has recalled to the Guardian, as remembered in this piece.
“When they signed him I said: ‘Madre mía, we’re going to be flying. I swear it. He’s a perfectionist. If Pep decided to be a musician, he would be a good musician. If he wanted to be a psychologist, he would be a good psychologist. He is obsessive; he would keep going until he got it right. He demands so much from himself. And that pressure that he puts on himself, those demands are contagious – it spreads to everyone. He wants everything to be perfect. He is a pesado.” (Heavy. Hard-working. Intense.)
But, again, he’ll be back.
Where? Well, here’s what the early odds say, according to European sports books:
- Chelsea – 3/1
- Man Utd – 7/2
- Man City – 5/1
- Inter Milan – 6/1
- England – 7/1
- Arsenal – 15/2
- AC Milan – 12/1
- Liverpool – 12/1