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Far-Fetched Friday: Pep Guardiola to Coach NYCFC Next
Pep Guardiola is arguably the best coach we have ever seen. He has single-handedly warped and revolutionized how modern teams play to the point where FIFA changed its rules to encourage everyone to embrace his tiki-taka style. He has also been extremely influential in the three countries he has coached in, as I wrote about here: Pep Guardiola Is the Best International Coach in Football
I say that to say the destination of his next project will be New York City FC.
Welcome back to Far-Fetched Friday, where every Friday we give you a bold prediction that we believe will come to fruition. This Friday, we look at a generational coach.
Pep's contract at Manchester City expires in 2025. After that, he will sign for New York City FC.
It may seem absurd, but I can convince you that this is a very real possibility because of three distinct reasons.
- Reason number one is that Pep Guardiola loves a new challenge.
This is a man that left a Barcelona job that he could have kept forever after just four years. His explanation was tiredness. Reading between the lines, he was essentially tired of winning. In four years, he won 14 trophies, which is more than any coach has ever won at the club. He also won a treble in his first season, and within 18 months of taking over the job, he became the first coach to win six trophies from one season. So within 18 months, he had already won everything possible at Barcelona. Add that he only lost 21 out of 247 games, and you get why he may have become tired of winning.
Then he took a break for a year. We'll return to where he took that sabbatical in a little bit.
Post-sabbatical Pep Guardiola landed at Bayern Munich in 2013 and won three straight Bundesliga trophies, which made Bayern the first club to win the Bundesliga four times in a row. And it was the structure he established then that many still credit as why Bayern is now on a streak of 10 successive league trophies. After winning 75% of his games and suffering just 19 losses in three years, he leaves again for a new challenge.
This time he joins Manchester City, the club at the head of the City Football Group, which we will revisit in a bit. So far, Pep Guardiola has led City to the first 100-point season in the premier league season, four premier league trophies in five years, and some of the best football the world has ever seen.
It is also important to note that the six years at City is the most Pep has ever spent at one place, and if he lets his contract run off before leaving like he's done at every club, then the nine years in England will dwarf the time he spent in Germany and Spain combined.
And I know what you're thinking. He likes England more than anywhere else, so why wouldn't he stay there? To that, I counter that England isn't the reason he's staying- the City Football Group is the reason.
- Reason number two is that Pep loves the City sports group and its project.
The CFG consists of 11 professional teams in 11 countries and five continents. Those teams are:
- Manchester City - England
- New York City FC - United States
- Melbourne City FC - Australia
- Yokohama F. Marinos - Japan
- Montevideo City Torque - Uruguay
- Girona - Spain
- Sichuan Jiuniu - China
- Mumbai City FC - India
- Lommel SK - Belgium
- ES Troyes AC - France
- Palermo - Italy
The City Football Group is a global soccer franchise that shares intellectual property, training methods, squad building, funds, and playing philosophy between the different clubs. The coach at the top of that franchise is Pep Guardiola making him and that bald head of his the project's most valuable asset. His ideas and philosophies are the ones spread through the City Football Group. Perhaps, almost as importantly, his presence also gives CFG that extra credibility they need. He shows they are not just some massive money-hungry sports conglomerate, rather, they are a true footballing project driving forward the development of the game, evident by their employment of the greatest footballing mind of the 21st century.
And what does Guardiola get out of this? With Manchester City, he is virtually molding a club from scratch in his image and ideas. They also offer him the financial flexibility needed to try and fulfill the demands of his most radical tactical philosophies. It is a match made in heaven.
So if Guardiola and CFG are a match made in heaven, but he is still that same man that loves a new challenge, what does it mean for their future? It means Guardiola will leave, but only for another club in the CFG.
- The third and final reason is that Pep Guardiola loves New York
After leaving Barcelona in 2012, Guardiola announced he would take a year-long sabbatical from coaching. He could have spent that time anywhere on the globe, so it is particularly eye-opening that Pep Guardiola chose to spend his year away from football in New York City. This choice is clear evidence that he has a love for the big apple.
Pep Guardiola can take his coaching aura to the MLS, revolutionize what the league looks like and bring about a new appreciation for the sport in a country that is growing in its love for the beautiful game.
His love for a new challenge, the CFG, and New York City means NYCFC is the ideal fit for Pep Guardiola once his contract expires in 2026.
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