German Football Legend Bastian Schweinsteiger Blames Pep Guardiola For Decline in German Football

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    Bastian Schweinsteiger has blamed Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola for the gradual decline in German football.

    Speaking on talkSPORT, the former Bayern Munich midfielder said German football has declined due to the influence of Pep Guardiola.

    Bastian Schweinsteiger blames Pep Guardiola for decline in German football

    According to Schweinsteiger, German football has not remained the same since Pep Guardiola joined one of the elite clubs, Bayern Munich, as manager in 2013

    ‘We were kind of losing our values,’ Schweinsteiger told talkSPORT on Thursday.

    The former footballer turned pundit added Guardiola watered down the defining texture and rubric of German football after introducing his cosmetic tiki-taka style of play which places emphasis on nicely controlling the ball, passing around and dribbling opponents with possessive play.

    Such styles, according to him, are deleterious to German football pattern known through the ages with their peculiar fighting spirit, counters, quick runs, and fast-paced attacks.

    Bastian Schweinsteiger Pep Guardiola
    Bastian Schweinsteiger and Pep Guardiola worked together at Bayern Munich from 2013 to 2015

    The former Manchester United player claimed Guardiola drown such spirits with the niceties of his possessive and tiki-taka style which left German football sharply declining in the past seven years.

    ‘I think most of the other countries were looking at Germany as a fighter, we can run until the end and everything. The strengths got lost through the last seven, eight years. We forgot about that and were more focused on playing the ball nicely to each other. That’s one of the reasons,’ Schweinsteiger said of Germany’s decline since 2016.

    It is understood Bastian Schweinsteiger came under the tutelage of Pep Guardiola while he was playing for Bayern Munich between 2013 and 2015.

    Pep Guardiola became Bayern Munich manager in 2013 joining the Bundesliga giants as one of the top-rated European football managers after his heroics with Barcelona.

    Bastian Schweinsteiger Pep Guardiola
    Guardiola finally wins Champions League with Manchester City

    Throughout his three years with the Bundesliga giants, Pep Guardiola brought his mastery of the game to bear, dominating German domestic club competitions.

    In his first season with the club, Guardiola won a domestic double, wining the Bundesliga and the DFB-Pokal. He won the Bundesliga again in 2014/15 and 2015/16 season, winning it three times on a row throughout his stint at the club.

    Notably, Guardiola’s domestic dominance did not translate into European success. Guardiola inherited a Champions League winning squad in 2013 and led the team to UEFA Super Cup and FIFA Club World Cup glory but was found wanting in Champions League in the following season.

    According to Schweinsteiger, Bayern Munich’s failure on the European stage underscores the limitation of the Guardiola style on the European stage and has equally affected Germany national team performance on European stage since then.

    A year after Pep Guardiola arrived at Bayern Munich, a supply pool for Germany national team, Germany won the 2014 World Cup under Joachim Low.

    Bastian Schweinsteiger Pep Guardiola
    Germany have struggled in competitive tournaments since 2016

    Their next best international outing was reaching the semi-finals of Euro 2016 and have struggled since then. The team crashed out in the group stage of the 2018 World Cup and was eliminated in the group stage again in the 2022 World Cup. They also struggled in Euro 2020 and have managed just three wins in their last eleven matches.

    While Guardiola must have influenced Bayern Munich pattern of football and by extension Germany national team style of play, his influence on Germany football fortunes over the years can be dismissed as speculative.

    Germany will host Euros 2024 and will be expected to bounce back to winning ways with a good hand able to get the best out of the players.

    While German football seems to have declined, Guardiola has gone on to vindicate his tikitaka style of play by winning a historic treble with Manchester City in the 2022-2023 season.

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