Former Bayern boss Magath claims 'Messi won the titles, not Guardiola'

‘Messi won the titles, not Guardiola’: Former Bayern Munich manager Felix Magath slams Manchester City boss’ ‘boring’ tiki-taka and claims Catalan can’t win the Champions League without the Barcelona icon

  • Pep Guardiola has not won a Champions League since leaving Barcelona in 2012
  • The Catalan couldn’t get past the semi-finals with Bayern Munich in Germany
  • At Manchester City he was knocked-out by Lyon in the quarter-finals last season
  • Felix Magath believes Guardiola was reliant on Lionel Messi at Barcelona 

Lionel Messi was the secret behind Pep Guadriola’s Barcelona success and his ‘boring’ tiki-taka has been the Catalan’s downfall in the Champions League since, according to ex-Bayern Munich boss Felix Magath.

The Manchester City supremo has twice been crowned champion of Europe, taking the title back to the Nou Camp in 2009 and 2011 with Messi scoring in both finals. 

Guardiola hasn’t made a European final since, failing on his principle objective at Bayern Munich and, so far, at City too – with a hat-full of semi-final and quarter-final exits along the way. 

Pep Guardiola is still looking for a Champions League title at Manchester City after four years

The Citizens were knocked-out by Lyon in the quarter-finals of the competition last season

Lionel Messi was in some of his best form for his years under Guardiola and let him to titles 

Five league titles and eight additional trophies have gone a long way towards making up for his Champions League drought, but Magath is still not convinced by the 49-year-old.  

‘Messi won the titles, not Guardiola,’ he told Sport Bild. 

‘Without Messi, this system has never worked as successfully for Guardiola, otherwise he would have won the Champions League with Bayern or Manchester City long ago. 

Former Fulham and Bayern boss Magath slammed Guardiola’s tiki-taka tactics as ‘boring’

‘Tiki-taka only works if you have players who are technically superior to their opponents. For the spectator, holding the ball, as I call it, is just boring and a top team doesn’t really need it.

‘In my opinion, Guardiola generally too often gets lost in trying to win a game in advance. That tactic often ends in wrong decisions, which prevent success.’

Guardiola has endured a difficult start to the 2020-21 season with a 5-2 humiliation at Leicester followed by a 1-1 draw with Leeds, and need to make some big improvements for another tilt at the Champions League this season. 

It may be his last chance too, with the Spaniard’s contract expiring in just seven months as he stalls on resigning at the Etihad.  

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