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Pep Guardiola: Another Way of Winning: The Biography

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Otra manera de ganar es la primera biografía de Pep Guardiola, y la única en haber entrado a la intimidad futbolística y personal del hombre que revolucionó la manera de jugar convirtiéndose en el entrenador más exitoso del mundo. Desde la primera charla que dio en el vestuario cuando asumió hasta los motivos de las decisiones más difíciles, Guillem Balagué reconstruye la v Otra manera de ganar es la primera biografía de Pep Guardiola, y la única en haber entrado a la intimidad futbolística y personal del hombre que revolucionó la manera de jugar convirtiéndose en el entrenador más exitoso del mundo. Desde la primera charla que dio en el vestuario cuando asumió hasta los motivos de las decisiones más difíciles, Guillem Balagué reconstruye la vida y la mente de Guardiola a partir de entrevistas personales con él, con los principales futbolistas del Barcelona, además de entrenadores y jugadores rivales que sufrieron el talento blaugrana. Entre ellos, sir Alex Ferguson que, pese a perder dos finales de la Liga de Campeones contra el Barcelona, admira a Guardiola. Cómo es el hombre que consiguió un número extraordinario de títulos y cuál era su verdadera relación con los miembros clave de su entorno durante los maravillosos cuatro años en que estuvo a cargo del mejor equipo de la historia. Sin embargo, para Pep el triunfo iba acompañado de cierto drama personal: cada partido era uno menos en la élite, nunca se sintió lo suficientemente bueno en su trabajo, sus disputas con Mourinho le hicieron daño y padecía enormemente tomando decisiones hasta que dio por terminado el ciclo más exitoso del fútbol moderno para tomarse un año sabático antes de su esperado regreso al frente del Bayern Munich. Por todo esto, la vida de Pep Guardiola es también otra manera de ganar.


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Otra manera de ganar es la primera biografía de Pep Guardiola, y la única en haber entrado a la intimidad futbolística y personal del hombre que revolucionó la manera de jugar convirtiéndose en el entrenador más exitoso del mundo. Desde la primera charla que dio en el vestuario cuando asumió hasta los motivos de las decisiones más difíciles, Guillem Balagué reconstruye la v Otra manera de ganar es la primera biografía de Pep Guardiola, y la única en haber entrado a la intimidad futbolística y personal del hombre que revolucionó la manera de jugar convirtiéndose en el entrenador más exitoso del mundo. Desde la primera charla que dio en el vestuario cuando asumió hasta los motivos de las decisiones más difíciles, Guillem Balagué reconstruye la vida y la mente de Guardiola a partir de entrevistas personales con él, con los principales futbolistas del Barcelona, además de entrenadores y jugadores rivales que sufrieron el talento blaugrana. Entre ellos, sir Alex Ferguson que, pese a perder dos finales de la Liga de Campeones contra el Barcelona, admira a Guardiola. Cómo es el hombre que consiguió un número extraordinario de títulos y cuál era su verdadera relación con los miembros clave de su entorno durante los maravillosos cuatro años en que estuvo a cargo del mejor equipo de la historia. Sin embargo, para Pep el triunfo iba acompañado de cierto drama personal: cada partido era uno menos en la élite, nunca se sintió lo suficientemente bueno en su trabajo, sus disputas con Mourinho le hicieron daño y padecía enormemente tomando decisiones hasta que dio por terminado el ciclo más exitoso del fútbol moderno para tomarse un año sabático antes de su esperado regreso al frente del Bayern Munich. Por todo esto, la vida de Pep Guardiola es también otra manera de ganar.

30 review for Pep Guardiola: Another Way of Winning: The Biography

  1. 5 out of 5

    Steve Duffy

    Since Guillem Balague's English puts many UK sports journalists to shame, I was expecting a quick and easy read in a clear, idiomatic style, and I wasn't disappointed. What I really wanted from this book, and what Balague delivers, was some insight - both into the personality of Pep Guardiola, the most spectacularly successful football manager of the moment, and into the methods of coaching that produced, in the form of the current FC Barcelona team, one of the best football sides of all time. B Since Guillem Balague's English puts many UK sports journalists to shame, I was expecting a quick and easy read in a clear, idiomatic style, and I wasn't disappointed. What I really wanted from this book, and what Balague delivers, was some insight - both into the personality of Pep Guardiola, the most spectacularly successful football manager of the moment, and into the methods of coaching that produced, in the form of the current FC Barcelona team, one of the best football sides of all time. Balague provides both. Any fan of Barça - in fact, any real* football lover - will find something of interest in here. * Perhaps not any Real football lover. :-)

  2. 5 out of 5

    George

    Pep looked into the stands while everyone was waiting for his words. The stadium was near full to capacity with 88,044 spectators, sitting in anticipation. Some holding each other. Fully grown men trying to hide their tears. Young girls taking pictures on their phones to capture the moment. As everyone remained on their feet, Pep's dad, Valentí, had to sit down because his legs were trembling. The man considered the club's favourite son was leaving home, again. It was goodbye to an older brother Pep looked into the stands while everyone was waiting for his words. The stadium was near full to capacity with 88,044 spectators, sitting in anticipation. Some holding each other. Fully grown men trying to hide their tears. Young girls taking pictures on their phones to capture the moment. As everyone remained on their feet, Pep's dad, Valentí, had to sit down because his legs were trembling. The man considered the club's favourite son was leaving home, again. It was goodbye to an older brother for some, a father figure for others, a Messiah, even, for a few. An example of comportment, a leader, a role model, courteous, the ideal husband, the fiancé you dream of, the friend you share a beer with on a Saturday, a good man, healthy, calm and alternately passionate and measured according to what the moment requires. A nation, a club and its fans were feeling orphaned. Imagine. Imagine having to represent all those roles. The weight of all that, the pressure. Can you understand now why he had to go? This biography of Pep Guardiola is a fantastic read, telling the story of his childhood in Cataluña, his playing days for Barça and beyond, and then his rise to legend as coach of the best team in the world from 2008 - 2012. At the end of those four seasons, Pep shocked the world by leaving his boyhood club, claiming he had done all he could do and that the time he had enjoyed there was enough for him to leave on a high. Crucially, he believed he had come to the end of a cycle and did not want to lose himself or see the club lose through fatigue. Guillem Balague, a welcome gift to all English football fans because of his commentary on the Spanish game in our country, tells a wonderful story that captures all the key moments of Pep's time in charge of Barça - the happy times, the sad times, and what effect the emotional rollercoaster ride had on its players and manager through offering first-hand accounts from the people involved. Pep comes across as a deep and thoughtful sportsman, who, while being very obviously great at his job - perhaps even the best - has a rich internal life with ambitions and fears that we all share in some form or other. Like most real-life heroes he is truly great but acknowledges his all-too-human vulnerabilities. That is why I would say that not only is this one of the best sports biographies I have read, but it is an absolutely brilliant biography full-stop. While I was reading the book, Pep - at last - announced that he is coming to England. Now we know he will coach Manchester City FC next season and carry that club's hopes and dreams but what is most important is that he will bring his idiosyncratic "tiki-taka" playing style to a country caught in what I would say is a footballing crisis. At the time of writing this review, the ultimate underdogs Leicester City FC top the Premier League table through being a great counter-attacking side, making full use of the opportunities they get each and every game because they don't care to hold possession or play a dominant passing style. They choose not to have the ball for much of the 90 minutes but when they do have it, they make sure to make it count and leave a nasty bite. This is an amazing story in itself, but although I have a soft spot for Roy of the Rovers narratives, we are in need of a team that will lead the way with the aim of creating a perfect football style. Pep at Barça, and now at Bayern Munich, has demanded high performances from his players in key parts of the game. High percentage ball possession, extreme spacial awareness, and confidence in attack are three stand-out characteristics that his teams show. Perhaps that is the future for this crazy Premier League if Pep's City side leads the way: Pass and move, and make the football do the work while staying true to your vision. Or, put very simply in Pep's own words, 'When we have the ball, we can't lose it. And when that happens, run and get it back.' We will have to wait and see but if this book is an indicator as to what we should expect then I think the future is looking very bright for our national game. His side will lead the way and other teams will - hopefully - follow. Welcome to England, Pep!

  3. 5 out of 5

    Ale

    I actually started reading this on the recommendation of a coworker (the same one who told me to read Inverting the Pyramid: The History of Football Tactics) and I felt that with Guardiola now the manager of Bayern, I really ought to learn more about him and his style. What I didn't expect was to find an entertaining, well-written account of Guardiola's career, from star player to the prodigal son returning to lead Barcelona to unprecedented glory. Balague is apparently a reported on Sky who pri I actually started reading this on the recommendation of a coworker (the same one who told me to read Inverting the Pyramid: The History of Football Tactics) and I felt that with Guardiola now the manager of Bayern, I really ought to learn more about him and his style. What I didn't expect was to find an entertaining, well-written account of Guardiola's career, from star player to the prodigal son returning to lead Barcelona to unprecedented glory. Balague is apparently a reported on Sky who primarily covers La Liga, and his knowledge is evident throughout, as is his dedication to retrieving as much of the facts as possible. The language is easy to follow and full of warmth; this is clearly the account of a man who loves and respects Guardiola a lot. The introduction, by Sir Alex Ferguson, asks why Guardiola ever left Barcelona. The book then endeavours to ask that question, by using information from interviews with other managers, Barcelona players and Guardiola himself. It is a truly touching account of a man who gave his all both as a player and as a manager, and for whom Barcelona will always be home. It also explains why he ultimately had to leave, and what he hopes he will find at Bayern. The reason I didn't end up giving this book five stars is because I felt parts of it became repetitive. While for most the story of Pep at Barcelona is a familiar one, for me it largely wasn't. The fact that it's basically all summarised in the first chapter made it feel a bit... redundant to read on (especially initially). I am glad I did, after all, but ultimately I felt it could have been a bit better paced. That being said, I would definitely recommend this to anyone with a passing interest in perhaps one of the best managers in recent history. I very much look forward to seeing what he'll achieve with Bayern, and whatever projects Guardiola decides to undertake in future.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Bahul

    great read .... the man and his principles, thoughts,inner demons all presented in a simple manner .... after reading it my perception of the beautiful game has evolved ...its not all about the score line or statistics but also about the values ,morals,passion,spirit and exhilaration that this game is instilled with which makes it a world winner and this game is safe in the hands of PEP and others like him ... adios ... joga bonito

  5. 4 out of 5

    James

    I'd imagine this is often described as 'comprehensive' and was mostly about Guardiola's tenure at Barcelona, although it does touch on his playing career and Bayern stint as well. Unlike poorer and lazier biographies, the manager is always the focus and so this is a genuinely insightful book. Balague has conducted interviews with Guardiola and a lot of his players for this book, and this really shows as his personality is examined and there are personal accounts rather than just newspaper excerpt I'd imagine this is often described as 'comprehensive' and was mostly about Guardiola's tenure at Barcelona, although it does touch on his playing career and Bayern stint as well. Unlike poorer and lazier biographies, the manager is always the focus and so this is a genuinely insightful book. Balague has conducted interviews with Guardiola and a lot of his players for this book, and this really shows as his personality is examined and there are personal accounts rather than just newspaper excerpts. Together this adds up to an admiring, but not fawning, portrait of a very successful manager. Balague steers clear of listing results and instead focuses on fewer, more critical events where Guardiola has a direct influence, which give a good impression of how he acts on a day-to-day basis as manager, which is often missing in manager biographies. Perhaps a more critical tone could have been employed at times though, as Pep and the author both admit he is imperfect, without ever really giving any examples of his mistakes, brushing off 'having a few regrets' without expanding on them. The only mistake alluded to is Guardiola asking his Bayern team how they'd like to play against Madrid, or 'my mistake was not imposing my methods' in other words. The Bayern section is also weaker than the detailed Barcelona story, and I never fully understood how he was considered a bit of a weird outsider but on the receiving end of very generous offers to extend his contract. Not only does this lack some of the Barcelona detail, but the new edition doesn't seem to edit the last ending particularly well, changing tenses and in need of amending to make it more polished. That doesn't mean the Bayern section was poor, just that it didn't match the very strong original, and there are lots of details that I've picked up from other journalists elsewhere - unless Balague has not referenced his sources, he clearly has a lot of very good contacts close to Guardiola - that meant this was illuminating, and a much better biography than average for a figure in football.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Samuel Jones

    Great read that gives insight into the life and mind of Pep Guardiola. Very inspirational when learning about the things that drive Pep to be successful, and give a a good feeling of personal motivation when reading. As someone who admires Guardiola for what he has done in the game of football his personal story described in more detail by Balague was very interesting. The only criticism I would have is the lack of a clear structure in the book; although the majority of it follows a linear proce Great read that gives insight into the life and mind of Pep Guardiola. Very inspirational when learning about the things that drive Pep to be successful, and give a a good feeling of personal motivation when reading. As someone who admires Guardiola for what he has done in the game of football his personal story described in more detail by Balague was very interesting. The only criticism I would have is the lack of a clear structure in the book; although the majority of it follows a linear process, some of the stories and anecdotes flick and change between different periods of time which can create a bit of confusion. All in all would definitely read if you are interested in the story of Pep Guardiola.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Arnau Jimenez Marin

    Wonderful insight on everything that is Pep Guardiola, but not only. I'm Catalan, a big Barça fan and an even bigger admirer of Pep. This book taught me a lot about how he is as a man, a coach, a leader and in some cases (albeit rarely) as an enemy. Even though I wished the book contained more tactical analysis and had a bigger focus on how he does his job, I was extremely fascinated with all the parts regarding his game planning and all the anecdotes about particular matches or training session Wonderful insight on everything that is Pep Guardiola, but not only. I'm Catalan, a big Barça fan and an even bigger admirer of Pep. This book taught me a lot about how he is as a man, a coach, a leader and in some cases (albeit rarely) as an enemy. Even though I wished the book contained more tactical analysis and had a bigger focus on how he does his job, I was extremely fascinated with all the parts regarding his game planning and all the anecdotes about particular matches or training sessions. All in all I think I learned a lot from this book thanks to Guillem Balague and I really recommend this read to everyone how loves football. So "fasten your seat belts"!

  8. 4 out of 5

    Doug Thompson

    An incredible insight in to what makes, arguably the best coach in world football, tick! There are so many lessons to be learned from Pep's passion, attitude and sheer determination to do stick to his guns whilst constantly innovating and reshaping the game that we know and love. His leadership and man management can be admired, not only from a footballing perspective, but for any and all industries and walks of life! With each page, I found myself wanting nothing more than to get back in to a c An incredible insight in to what makes, arguably the best coach in world football, tick! There are so many lessons to be learned from Pep's passion, attitude and sheer determination to do stick to his guns whilst constantly innovating and reshaping the game that we know and love. His leadership and man management can be admired, not only from a footballing perspective, but for any and all industries and walks of life! With each page, I found myself wanting nothing more than to get back in to a classroom or on to a football pitch! Another Way of Winning is a truly fascinating account of Pep's relationships with his family, friends, players, teammates, the media and more.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Nishant

    No doubt this was a great read and i learnt a lot about Pep as a person and his tactics in Barcelona. But still writing of the book didn't satisfy me. it was kind of very vague. any topic could pop up in any chapter. research in this book was good but this book could have been great with some systematic writing. Content wise this book has lots of information which you will not find anywhere like some of the one to one interactions between players and Pep. Recommended for everyone to read this bo No doubt this was a great read and i learnt a lot about Pep as a person and his tactics in Barcelona. But still writing of the book didn't satisfy me. it was kind of very vague. any topic could pop up in any chapter. research in this book was good but this book could have been great with some systematic writing. Content wise this book has lots of information which you will not find anywhere like some of the one to one interactions between players and Pep. Recommended for everyone to read this book.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Paa Kwesi

    Pep Guardiola is an amazing coach whose claim to fame came at Barcelona. His attention to detail and his tactics is captivating. Learning from the likes of the legend Johan Cruyff himself, he brought to bare that philosophy of “total football” with him to the La Masia where he really showed what Barca can achieve playing the Barca way”tiki take”. This book goes beyond tactics and football philosophy. It give you a tour of the man Pep’s footballing brain

  11. 4 out of 5

    Abin Arjun

    One of the finest footballing books I have read till now. Gives amazing insight on Peps's genius. A must read for all the aspiring football coaches out there on building a football ecosystem. The book chronicles his journey from being a star player to being a Barcelona B side coach to the first team manager. What he built with Barcelona is something spectacular and which has been well documented in this book. A very good read.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Laura Bradburn

    I reserve 5 stars for books I think anyone could enjoy. Though the subject matter is football, which I love, I genuinely think a wide variety of readers would enjoy this book. Reading about the often reserved character that is Pep Guardiola, the author really gets to the heart of his true character and motivations. I doubt you’d read this and not find something to apply to your own life afterwards.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Jessie

    This book describes the beginning of Pep's managerial career. A thorough look at his record-breaking time at Barcelona behind-the-scenes, the difficulties of managing players while balancing the demands of the board. The pressures that each important match placed on Pep's shoulders is written in great detail, it shows why Pep needed to leave Barca even after all the success.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Shatterlings

    This is an in depth look at the career of Pep, it’s all interesting but has the feel in parts of being a selection of essays rather than a joined up biography. So sometimes it was a little repetitive and sometimes the tenses seem weird, but it’s well written and if you like Pep you’ll like this.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Libu Balakrishnan

    Decent book. A good read about his time at Barca. Beyond that it's a hurried close and methinks that Balague should have just stuck with his Barca days. Also disappointing that this seems like a politically correct "authorized" biography !

  16. 4 out of 5

    Optimus

    A great read. This book really portrays Guardiola in a good light,and really helps the reader to understand the genius,the madness,perfectionism,warmth and comradery and everything else that Pep Guardiola is and represents.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Daniel Pritchard

    The first half of the book was fantastic, particularly the stuff looking at his playing career and the road to 2010. There are however, some very repetitive passages regarding his ideology and style.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Shahbod

    The most important point of this book is a description of the details of Pep's career. Pep Guardiola's formula: Adherence to principles, permanent information

  19. 5 out of 5

    Richie Bryan

    Exceptional insight into the life and also the toll of football management.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Benjamin Pearson

    I always thought Pep was the Alexander the great of football managers. As way of backstory, Alexander’s father was the man who built his great army and unfortunately died before he was able to launch it. I always have seen Pep as coming in and inheriting this stellar group of world-class players at their peak and then simply just allowing them to do their job playing a system that the club has always played and became incredibly viable with this amazing group of players. Therefore not much work I always thought Pep was the Alexander the great of football managers. As way of backstory, Alexander’s father was the man who built his great army and unfortunately died before he was able to launch it. I always have seen Pep as coming in and inheriting this stellar group of world-class players at their peak and then simply just allowing them to do their job playing a system that the club has always played and became incredibly viable with this amazing group of players. Therefore not much work for a manager. This view was reinforced as he seemingly abandoned Barca as they declined, taking up camp at Bayern Munich that are their successors for the worlds best team and not changing their style of play but rather sitting there and allowing the players to just do their thing and of course win titles. The book however, changes my opinion on a few things and helped to illustrate the genius and dedication pep has for the beautiful game. That being said, when a man moves from current best club to their successors, one cant help feel a little bit skeptical as to his real pedigree as a coach. Hes never been in a position where he has been on a tight budge and needed to get the best out of inferior players or adjust tactics for superior sides.. He has always been in the team with the biggest guns, which gives him incredibly advantage and one would argue tactics can be a little less thorough. I found quite a few sections of the book to be quite moving, especially the scenes where he is having trouble with the politics that come with a Barca appointment. However the portrait trying to paint pep as this “I will start at the bottom and work my way up because I need to prove myself!” seems to be bullshit because I mean he was the coach of the biggest fucking club in the world, after only 6 months in the role as a youth coach. Then he transfers to Bayern because he wants “champions league football, a winning history and solid base”, that’s clearly not a man that likes too much of a challenge is it? I am just not buying that part of his story. Sure the book seems to take the view that he was thrust into the role as the manager, by forces outside his control and he had long debates about whether to accept it. Sure there would be stress around the appointment, but there bloody well should be given you have the best players in the world! I will stop returning to this point.. But really its my biggest problem with his story. I think a man should be judged on his actions, rather then his intentions and anything he espouses. I do have a new appreciation for Pep the man after reading this book and can appreciate his tactical nous when dealing with other big sides. He clearly is incredibly intelligent and the insight into his ability to read the game and make quick decisions explains a lot. I was compelled by the details of him watching previous opposition matches for hours, trying to pick their weakness that he could exploit. All in all, a well written book and one that you should pick up if you have any interest in a genius of modern day football.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Akhlaq

    Book succeeds in showing very well the sensitivity of PG and especially the strain of managing Barcelona for four years whilst maintaining a creative philosophy on the pitch that saw his side become one of the greatest of all time. People were baffled when he left with the talent he had at his disposal but he learnt from Cruyff that had he stayed too long then he and his team would have suffered with each other. JC regretted not leaving two years before he eventually did in 1996. And the last se Book succeeds in showing very well the sensitivity of PG and especially the strain of managing Barcelona for four years whilst maintaining a creative philosophy on the pitch that saw his side become one of the greatest of all time. People were baffled when he left with the talent he had at his disposal but he learnt from Cruyff that had he stayed too long then he and his team would have suffered with each other. JC regretted not leaving two years before he eventually did in 1996. And the last season gave him a glimpse of what could have become, i.e. disagreements with players like Pique, Messi could have metamorphosed into relationships breaking down. He wasn’t aware of Tito taking the position so difficult to ascertain he was against it. Pep is the symbol of what Barcelona is all about: humility, respect, talent, hard-work and effort. He took the formula from Laureano Ruiz, JC and improved on it further vigorous pressing, the false nine that even Spain used. Strong point of book is sensitivity. Guardiola, despite managing Barcelona and being a player who competed at the very highest levels, was always a child underneath the bald head and gaunt figure. From the days he was at La Masia, to debating with Zubizaretta about the number of steps at the old Wembley, to being rejected by Eto’o and to some point Ibrahimovic, he wanted to be accepted and loved. When he wasn’t, like any manager, he could ruthless and cold. Pep adhered to the principles of Barcelona in press conferences only till JM arrived and he took him to task before the first leg in the CL semi final in 2011. PG given a great template of how a big player can transfer that talent into management. He didn’t take a big job asap but instead he travelled. Travelled to Argentina, Mexico, Dubai and other places, spoke to people about the task of manager, i.e. finding solutions to problems and learnt. Great template for other big players aspiring for management. A shame that PG never played in England but could coach there. The way he fought determinedly to clear his name after doping allegations show how transparency, respect means so much to him.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Mick

    I really enjoy Guillemo Balague insights as an analyser of Spanish football for Sky Sports and his likeable style transfers to this well researched biography of FC Barcelona's most successful manager. We are taken to the heart of all matters of Guardiola's record breaking reign. From the 5-0 thrashing of arch enemy Real Madrid (surely the single greatest team performance we're ever likely to witness?) to the lows of Champions League elimination at the hands of the dourly defensive Chelsea. Key c I really enjoy Guillemo Balague insights as an analyser of Spanish football for Sky Sports and his likeable style transfers to this well researched biography of FC Barcelona's most successful manager. We are taken to the heart of all matters of Guardiola's record breaking reign. From the 5-0 thrashing of arch enemy Real Madrid (surely the single greatest team performance we're ever likely to witness?) to the lows of Champions League elimination at the hands of the dourly defensive Chelsea. Key characters such as Messi, Xavi, Puyol, Iniesta, Abidal, Eto'o and the arrogant Ibrahimovic are discussed in depth too. As is Jose Mourinho, Real Madrid's coach, who doesn't come out of this one too well. We're all told that Barca are 'more than a club', but Balague takes great care to show us just how special an institution they are. It's all handled in an insightful manner and the author must have many a friend in Catalonia given the amount of exclusive anecdotes and interviews present. Most of the book though deals with Guardiola himself--- his ideals, politics, emotions, principles, his tactics and his reasons and so forth--- it's interesting if a little laboured and dry after a while. My only gripe is that the book is structured in a slightly confusing manner, meaning things that happened in 2011 are sometimes dealt with before incidents from the 2009 season. It also means the author repeats himself in places and it did detract from my enjoyment of this otherwise excellent and thorough bio of a truly special club and manager.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Kwame

    I read this book with thoroughness and went through some chapters twice. The author is an admirer of Pep Guardiola who is a fine human being and a sportsman. What surprised me about the book is that the author adopts a psychological approach to dissecting the subject and this worries me because that approach assumes a level of knowledge of Pep that this author certainly cannot have had. It goes through the four very intense years of Pep's leadership of FC Barcelona but leaves me with the view th I read this book with thoroughness and went through some chapters twice. The author is an admirer of Pep Guardiola who is a fine human being and a sportsman. What surprised me about the book is that the author adopts a psychological approach to dissecting the subject and this worries me because that approach assumes a level of knowledge of Pep that this author certainly cannot have had. It goes through the four very intense years of Pep's leadership of FC Barcelona but leaves me with the view that I am none the wiser as a description of Pep's analysis of games and opponents is not in the book itself. In sum, this book is really good with pep's history and the philosophy that this club espouses even if it may be expecting too much to have one book define why Barcelona FC exploded with success during pep's reign. The author suggests that its the perfect combination of the manager and team but not much else. Another riddle that remains safely unresolved is why pep really had to leave when he did.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Katríne

    Rating: 3.50 I know how much of a player Pep Guardiola is. As a fan of the sport and a cúle for just over 5 years, I never had the chance to see him play; but I have heard so much about him from other players. Many footballers, including Andres Iniesta and Cesc Fabregas, look up to him. I had the chance to watch Pep's Barça. They were a force to reckon with. They were always a joy to watch (except most probably if....). This book's wonderful as we could read what's going on in the mind of a Pep Gu Rating: 3.50 I know how much of a player Pep Guardiola is. As a fan of the sport and a cúle for just over 5 years, I never had the chance to see him play; but I have heard so much about him from other players. Many footballers, including Andres Iniesta and Cesc Fabregas, look up to him. I had the chance to watch Pep's Barça. They were a force to reckon with. They were always a joy to watch (except most probably if....). This book's wonderful as we could read what's going on in the mind of a Pep Guardiola. It's so nice to read about what his players thought of him (I know about his ugly rift with Ibra but I never thought that it was THAT ugly). I was so gutted that day he announced that he isn't going to continue with Barça. At that moment, I cannot imagine a Barça with Pep Guardiola. But what can you do if he wants to move on? At the end of the day, just have to accept that just like players, coaches will come and ago. A new era will always be born. It's just like that.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Una

    A great book about a great man...before he decided to try his hand at Bayern Munich. Balague has the unique talent of being able to write about sports figures in a way that's almost poetic. I am convinced that even a non-sports fan could read this book and be truly impressed at Balague's ability to to make real-life people into intriguing and seductive book presences. He describes Guardiola in both a romantic and factual way, taking extra care to layer in what he thought to be Guardiola's feelings A great book about a great man...before he decided to try his hand at Bayern Munich. Balague has the unique talent of being able to write about sports figures in a way that's almost poetic. I am convinced that even a non-sports fan could read this book and be truly impressed at Balague's ability to to make real-life people into intriguing and seductive book presences. He describes Guardiola in both a romantic and factual way, taking extra care to layer in what he thought to be Guardiola's feelings and thoughts in with concrete events that happened during his tenure at FC Barcelona. This book doesn't just discuss what happened and how it happened, but rather also explores the perceived thought process behind Pep's actions. He analyses his habits and dynamics perfectly. It's as much as study of a man in power as it is simply describing how one man lead a team to greatness. Great book.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Darren O'Toole

    Sporting books can often only paint a fairly limited picture of the individual, focussing on their success as opposed to their journey towards it. This excellent book provides a fantastic insight into Pep Guardiola's motivation, his rationale and inspires you to attempt to take this practice and mentality into your own lives. A typical detailed insight from Guillem Balague also makes you feel that you are not reading a collection of tabloid hearsay, but rather a first-hand biography. Well worth Sporting books can often only paint a fairly limited picture of the individual, focussing on their success as opposed to their journey towards it. This excellent book provides a fantastic insight into Pep Guardiola's motivation, his rationale and inspires you to attempt to take this practice and mentality into your own lives. A typical detailed insight from Guillem Balague also makes you feel that you are not reading a collection of tabloid hearsay, but rather a first-hand biography. Well worth a read.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Azmir Ismail

    An excellent book on the personality of Pep Guardiola the coach. It explains his philosophies in football generally, from his beginnings as a manager. If you want to know the whys of Pep's success, this book is a good read :)

  28. 4 out of 5

    Niko

    Interesting book. Inside look on Guardiola as a coach and as a really fragile person when it comes to acceptance, human relations, his devotion for Barca... There's a lot of stuff regarding football tactics, so those who are not football fans might find it a big boring. But on the other hand there's also a lot about general relations between Pep and his players. Also shows Leo Messi in a bit different light.

  29. 4 out of 5

    TaimoorAJ

    A fine account of Pep Guardiola's time spent at his beloved club Fc Barcelona. Giving details where needed, Guillem Balague presents Pep's life mostly in the context of Fc Barcelona. It is must read for those who wish to gain insight to the five years spent by Guardiola as a coach at the club. Although sometimes the information is duplicated and difficult to comprehend due to the flow of information, It still captures the readers interest finely.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Iliaskzz

    enjoyable biography,highly recommended for every fan of the Barca play style.Despite not being a culè (my case) you will certainly be amazed by Pep's leadership,values,tactical genius,and motivational speeches.and many hidden truths.I have come up,by the end of the book,to the conclusion he is a truly great man. This is my second football (auto)biography related book after "I am Zlatan" and it is definitely a thrill. Looking forward to reading Ancelotti's and Pirlo's ones so soon.

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