‘Pep Guardiola has surpassed Johan Cruyff’

The Netherlands boss and Barca’s legendary defender explains what makes Pep’s football tactics so special.
“In my opinion, Pep is the best football coach in the world. The football he’s bringing is sensational and he gets the best out of every player. All his teams produce fantastic football. He’s done it at Barcelona, at Bayern Munich and now at City.

“I know his ideas about football probably better than anyone else. His ideas come, obviously, from the Cruyff philosophy at Barcelona. We both played under Cruyff and we both knew how adventurous that was. It was attacking football like people had never seen, with a central defender moving into midfield, wingers, a striker, a shadow striker, and always putting pressure on the opponents.

“He has taken Cruyff’s ideas even more to the extreme. His tactical plans start with the keeper in the build up and his right and left-back become attacking players on the wings. He always has players on the inside and outside, and everywhere on the pitch he will create a situation with an extra man to combine with.

“The football Pep wants his teams to play is the most difficult there is at top level. It is fantastic to watch and I cannot underline enough how much we should all admire it.”