Don't Panic: Barcelona Will Continue Winning Without Guardiola

Pep Guardiola walked away from Barcelona. While I am obviously sad to see him leave, the Camp Nou will continue to stand strong without him. Many greats have left in the past, many greats will leave in the future.

The show must and will go on.

Since Guardiola announced his departure, I have heard a variety of rivals and so-called football experts arguing Barcelona's winning cycle is over. For me, it is clear those who doubt don't understand how our Blaugrana club works behind the scenes: Barça is much bigger than one person, whatever their name is.

Gracies Pep
Pep Guardiola took Barcelona to new heights in terms of sporting excellence while achieving worldwide recognition for our traditional attacking philosophy. Our legendary manager collected a tremendousfourteen trophies in just 4 seasons in charge, making him the most successful coach in our history. The way Pep Guardiola carried our team on and off the pitch gained respect from football fans not only in Catalunya, but around the world.
But his time at Barcelona is over now for many reasons.
Gerard Pique explained this week: 'Pep knew deep inside that it was time for him to leave, and he will now feel a bit of nostalgia after leaving the club. I hope he will return someday'
And there, in a nutshell, is an interesting point which will damage our club's future if we are not careful: The assumption Guardiola is leaving so that he can come back is false and dangerous at the same time. Sandro Rosell announced Tito Vilanova would be in charge of the team next season and, from that very moment, all the power in terms of new signings, squad management and tactical variations lies on his hands.
Don't be fooled: Guardiola will not be there when ugly decisions are taken in the near future. Guardiola will not answer to Mourinho's continuous attacks any longer. Guardiola has chosen to stop being part of Barcelona and, as a result, he will have no say about our future from now on.
In football, the most important match in the next one. Looking back at what Barcelona has achieved in the past will not help us move forward. Therefore, hoping Pep Guardiola may come back some day as if he was the one and only savior is pointless.
All I can say is: Gracies Pep, thanks for the memories and all the best for the future.
Tito Vilanova is in charge from now on.
Barcelona Have The Quality To Continue To Be Successful

As the clear 3-0 win over Athletic Bilbao in the Copa Del Rey final showed, the current Barcelona has reached a point of footballing maturity and excellence which makes this team stand out from the rest.
The mistake would be to assume that everything such dominance is entirely down to Pep Guardiola. Sure, the Catalan Master has played a key role to lead the team forward but he would have achieved nothing without the contributions of many others.
Both Barcelona presidents during Guardiola's time gave him everything he asked for. Laporta appointed Pep as manager despite being totally unproven at professional level, then signed Dani Alves, Keita, Pique, Hleb, Caceres, Henrique and Pinto (2008/09), Ibrahimovic, Maxwell, Keirrison and Chygrinski (2009/10) and David Villa (days before leaving his presidency, May 2010). Since Rosell took over, Barcelona have signed Mascherano, Adriano, Afellay (2010/11), Cesc Fabregas and Alexis Sanchez (2011/12) - While some of those players have flopped dramatically, it can't be denied the club has strengthened our squad by investing heavily during the Pep years.
Perhaps more importantly, Guardiola was also allowed to drop Ronaldinho, Deco, Eto'o and Ibrahimovic during his time in charge . The Barcelona board always prioritized Pep's opinion above any player which, as we know, is a rarity in top European football - Simply look at Villas-Boas at Chelsea or Luis Enrique at Roma.
The Barcelona squad doesn't need any major changes. Our four captains (Puyol, Xavi, Valdes and Iniesta) are going nowhere. Their roles within the changing room will be crucial next season, as they need to ensure players pull together to support Tito Vilanova in his new role as main coach. Other experienced players (Pique, Pedro, Busquets, Cesc, Mascherano) will carry the classic Barcelona concepts into the future under our new manager's influence.
Plus, we seem to have a little magician called Lionel Messi who certainly knows how to perform at the highest level. What a luxury.
The Barcelona fans are fully aware that change is inevitable over the years. On that basis, the immense majority of Cules are pleased that our successful footballing model will stay the same: Tito Vilanova belongs to the Cruyff, Rijkaard, Guardiola traditional Barcelona school of thought. The formation or internal mechanisms may evolve with the times, but the essence behind it all remains.
What We Learned
Pep Guardiola's departure closes the most successful era in Barcelona history but I strongly believe our club will continue to be stronger for years to come if those who are now in charge work together.
Barcelona have lost a charismatic leader in Guardiola but Tito Vilanova's appointment ensures the model can continue.
The current squad only needs minor changes to stay competitive.
Cule fans have reached a degree of maturity and togetherness which is previously unseen at the Camp Nou.
Overcoming tough challenges has been a constant in Barcelona's history. We have done it before. Together, we can do it again.
I can't wait for our next season to start.
Bring it on!
Have Your Say 
What did you think of this article?
Do you think Barcelona has a bright future ahead without Guardiola?
Can Tito Vilanova earn the respect of the players and take those tricky decisions?
How do you feel ahead of the summer transfer window?
Did I miss out on any important points you would like to share with us?
I welcome and appreciate all respectful feedback.
Força Barça!!
Posted by: Francesc Tomàs
Founder and Columnist at
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  1. temoch27.5.12

    Hello, I've been reading your articles for some time now, and have found them very insightful and wise, mainly because they are realistic. I agree that it is dangerous to believe that pep will simply waltz in if things go bad and I'm glad to see someone point it out. your blog is always refreshing keep up the good work!

  2. There is plenty of reasons to still be optimistic. Our squad is still fantastic. The appointment of Tito will ensure that progress will be through evolution rather than revolution as Tito played a major in the tactics as pep's assistant. The support of the senior players is crucial especially if some of them start to have less playing time. The biggest danger is Tito is seen as a syopgap while Pep has a rest with everyone hoping that Pep then returns.


    Posted by zara santa 10 hours, 22 minutes ago
    my ronaldinho the great is one of biggest players of barselona remember him ever .

    Posted by sanusi Adamu 10 hours, 16 minutes ago
    Certainly Barca did not start with pep and will not end with pep.Tito was his assisstant & now the manager.The players love him &he loves the traditional Barca style.we should give him all the neccessary support.He deserve & earn it. We will suprise those who think the end of Barca dominance is over.

    Posted by Fadipe opeyemi 9 hours, 59 minutes ago
    I can see a brighter future ahead of barcelonia despite the exit of pep guardiola. Goodluck & success to tito.

    Posted by Shollz 8 hours, 42 minutes ago
    This is a very beautiful article. For Vilanova to succeed he has to continue the philosophy but bring in some personal creativeness into d team. He musnt do just what Pep did. He needs full support of d board n players. Finally, some games r so difficult(parking d bus) in front of goal kind of games. And so we need good central forwards who possess great physical strength in d likes of Falcao,Cavanni,Dzeko or Llorente to make our attack more potent and dangerous. A good central defender and a left back are also essential. With d core of d team, we'll continue to match up to our standardsn rule Europe.

    Posted by ABUBAKAR DANYARO YAKASAI 7 hours, 25 minutes ago
    Barcelona 4life.

    Posted by Paul Santos 6 hours, 28 minutes ago
    I don't know if Barca can win, like before. the problem is Madrid and Mourinho. He's a fabulous tactical master and he knows all Barca weak points.
    We shall wait and see!!!

    Posted by Scott Wolf 2 hours, 55 minutes ago
    Great piece.
    I have an issue with the way Guardiola left,though.He clearly wanted to pursue other opportunities in Europe.Why not just say that?This nonsense of "recharging' his battery/taking a sabbatical" seems to be specious.I don't care about 14 titles.If he shows up at another club next year,I will root for his unmitigated failure.I also don't believe he was burnt out;I believe there were serious issues between he and Rosell.
    2013 needs:
    Villa and Pedro need to stay healthy and score goals again.Villa was obviously hurt,but aside from the last few games with nothing to play for,Pedro was awful this year.This has to change.
    Puyol is not healthy,and Pique was erratic this year.We have serious issues in our back line that must be addressed.
    We need to better adapt our flowing football to teams like Chelsea who when they play Barca have no intention of actually participating in the match.Quite frankly,I was embarrassed by the semifinal loss to such a poor opponent.

  4. Posted by Hans Klouwens 9 hours, 29 minutes ago
    I doubt whether Tito Vilanova will continue and in fact improve upon the successes of Frank Rijkaard like Pep Guardiola did after his departure. Time will tell though and I wish him the very best in his time in charge.

    Posted by Joe 8 hours, 13 minutes ago
    Forca Barca. I think Barcelona need Central Defender & Left Back and also The most important things is a central forward. Like Llorente, Falcao or Van Persie.

    Posted by de prince Aderemi M.O 7 hours, 58 minutes ago
    The future of barca is so bright despite d exit of pep.

    Posted by jay p 7 hours, 21 minutes ago
    well said little don. The basis is about our philosophy n understanding of times. Change is one aspect of human life and we must embrace whole heartedly, what next on our radar is perfect signings and good tactics. Long live barca, gracias Don Guardiola. May GOD himself bless u. But come back to football cos we will miss u greatly.

  5. Posted by Lance 7 hours, 18 minutes ago
    You seem to have learned nothing from this seasons' failures.
    Barcelona badly need a world class forward who can score 20-25 goals per season and relying on Messi as the sole goalscorer of the team has proved disastrous. It worked in 2011 with Messi going past 4-5 defenders in Madrid and getting the team to the final, but it was clear at that point that this wouldn't work for the next season and it didn't. You can't have Tello and Cuenca in the starting 11 in the most important matches of the season.
    Barca also need a world class defender who can play right back/center back because Puyol is getting old and has fitness issues and because Alves' was sub-par this season. Branislav Ivanovic would be no 1 transfer target if the Barca board had any idea how to move in the transfer market. Unfortunately they don't, and he will probably end up in Madrid.
    And we also need an attacking midfielder that can play on all sides since Afellay proved to be a flop. Give Alves to City and get Nasri.

    Posted by dancelestine 6 hours, 57 minutes ago
    Actually i z really disapointed wit pep,now he is saying he is open 2 any club if he is seduce,y nt juz tell d barca board dat he needs a pay rise dan dis issue of charging my battery.shame if he shud return soon.

    Posted by olatunde 6 hours, 25 minutes ago
    No one is greater than the club either pep nor any player the key word is unity and the continuity of club philosophy which is the energy that burns and make the club remains competitive.

    Posted by kellz 4 hours, 55 minutes ago
    Well I believe barca is still the best and with the canibal of players we have we can achieve more than before. Goodluck to Tinto.Still barca 4life

    Posted by ARIYO WASIU AYODEJI 4 hours, 24 minutes ago

  6. Posted by rose 3 hours, 55 minutes ago
    i totally agree with u...i have been saying the same thing..i wonder how they thought or came up with the idea & theory.the core of the barca team are still very young(cesc,pique,sanchez,messi,)then u have the iniesta,alves,maschreno,(who are in their late 20's..wat dis tells us,is they can still perform at a high level 4 some years 2 come..wat they need do is just 2 add some 3 or 4 players 2 the squad,,,besides messi is 24 not 34...bcos madrid won the league doesn't mean,barca is over...even when barca plays badly,madrid still find it difficult 2 deal with them...A TEAM LIKE CHELSEA NEEDS SERIOUS CHANGE BCOS THE CORE OF THE PLAYERS ARE IN THEIR 30'S..ALL they (barcelona) needs 2 do is 2 keep this players motivated,hungry,spirited & willing..they will continue 2 dominate..THEY MAY NOT ALWAYS WIN 6 TROPHIES BUT CAN GUARANTEE A TROPHY A SEASON & THATS THE BEST A CLUB CAN ASK 4.

    Posted by Jon Glass 1 hour, 29 minutes ago
    For the next season, A good chunk of the players need to spend a lot of time at the beach just to rest up. Despite not having a full team preseason and the players barely getting any rest, a CDR title, Club World Cup title, both supercups, runner up in La Liga and a semi final finish in the Champions League isn't as bad of a finish that people make it out to be.
    In terms of personnel changes, Barca just need to deepen their back line and keep the forwards and midfielders healthy. A left back is an absolute must given Abidal's health problems and the fact that Adriano and Puyol aren't real LBs. Barca also just need a cheap CB like Botia or build up Bartra, Muniesta and Fontas (when he gets back healthy). An out an out striker would also be really nice, but isn't a dire emergency. Other players need to step up with the goals instead of Messi scoring 70 goals to carry Barca deep in competitions.

  7. Posted by Paschal 3 hours, 20 minutes ago
    Great article.
    Tito will no doubt perform very well next season.
    My only worry would be for the UEFA champions' league. Barca may need to go back to the system of strong wing play(read Figo and Rivaldo times). In that way we shall be able to overcome teams like Chelsea that tend to pack the bus. A fancy wing player with intelligent dribbles would add a new dimension to the game. thankfully Barca already has players who can play that role very well. It's just the attacking philosophy that should be altered a bit. Good luck to Tito. Forca Barca.

    Posted by Lateef 3 hours, 15 minutes ago
    Get david luis, alaba n jordi alba for defence. No need for additio in midfield. Get gareth bale to support the messi for transition work in the attack. Release keita, adriano and affelay. And encourage batra, muniesa, montoya, rafina, gerald etc. With this we wil 6 trophies again in a year againg.

    Posted by Jose Gonzalez 2 hours, 11 minutes ago
    I would like to let everybody to know,a very important point,because it seems,almost has gone unnoticed,that one if not the most relevant issue
    in respect to F.C.Barcelona,not achieving titles:La Liga,UEFA Champions Ligue...,has been the cruel plague of injuries that it has suffered all in the just finished season.And I do not want people,to think of this like an excuse.Those injuries have been there,for sure.Here:Villa,out since last December;Alexis Sanchez,out for 2 months;Fabregas out for several weeks,like Pedro,Puyol,Pique,Iniesta,Xavi,even D.Alves,
    Adriano.All these players,sometimes in combination with one onother.Apart from the lost
    of Abidal for the most crucial part of the season
    when the titles were on the line.I just want people to at least recognize,the odds that the
    F.C.Bercelona had been fighting all season long.
    I am sure,this was 'The' reason,among the reasons.
    Hope next season things are more normal.Injuries
    are way of life in sports.But so many,no.

    1. had u forgorting dat titto hav worked side by sides wit guardiola?dis not d first time i do blv dat we hav d qualities to parform dis so let ur mind be at rest barca is going to make it i blv dat ur barca.

  8. although it not very easy seeing ur choosen one coach leaving,but i do blved dat barcelona can stil move on yes i knew dat ,no shaking i'm barca fan 4 life up barca 4 life.

  9. Mayank29.5.12

    i absolutely agree.the homegrown core of our team is going nowhere.the likes of mascherano,alves & villa are also staying put.the squad needs some minor tweaking but apart from that,the club has a very strong foundation in place comprising of some of the best players in the world along with THE best player in the world.the players have also demonstrated unprecedented togetherness.but more importantly,tito ensures continuity of our philosophy.


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