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Pep Guardiola ‘once asked his PLAYERS to choose the team for a crucial Barcelona B match’

Pep Guardiola ‘once asked his PLAYERS to choose the team for a crucial Barcelona B match,’ reveals former wonder kid Gai Assulin … with the team achieving promotion after a late U-turn by the coach of the Manchester City

  • Pep Guardiola coached Barcelona B for a year before landing a place in the first team
  • The team reached the promotion play-offs when Guardiola made the suggestion
  • Barça B landed reaching Second Division B after Guardiola picked up the side
  • The current Manchester City manager won the Champions League in 2009.


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Pep Guardiola once asked his players to pick the team for a crucial match when he was managing Barcelona B, one of his former protégés revealed.

It was the Manchester City manager’s first job on the bench and the former midfielder had led the club’s second-row team to the brink of promotion to the third division of Spanish football in 2008.

Gai Assulin, one of the members of that team, told Goal: ‘We were in the promotion play-offs, and I remember the last game …

Gai Assulin has said that Pep Guardiola once asked the Barcelona B players to choose the team

Gai Assulin has said that Pep Guardiola once asked the Barcelona B players to choose the team

However, Guardiola eventually chose the starting eleven for the game, and they were promoted.

However, Guardiola eventually chose the starting eleven for the game, and they were promoted.

However, Guardiola eventually chose the starting eleven for the game, and they were promoted.

‘We tied the first leg, so then the second game at home, everyone was very nervous. Getting a promotion or not depended on that game.

‘In the last training session, [Guardiola] He said to the captain: ‘You choose the team, you choose the players.

“I don’t care which one of you plays because I trust you 100 percent and I know you will win. You choose the team, I’ll be sitting and enjoying it. ”

‘It’s something that sticks with me, as I’ve never heard that from any manager since. In the end, we all wanted to play, so he had to choose in the end, but it’s an experience that sticks with me. If there is one thing that coaches like, it is choosing the team! ‘

The team duly promoted to Second Division B, but Guardiola was destined for bigger and better things, taking the reins of the first team from Frank Rijkaard and guiding the Blaugrana to a memorable triplet with a style of soccer that other teams could only endure and marvel at.

Assulin, for his part, saw his time at the Camp Nou hampered by injury after rising through the ranks of La Masia and was unable to force himself into Guardiola’s plans on a regular basis upon his return.

Gai Assulin was a great prospect at Camp Nou, but could not develop his potential

Gai Assulin was a great prospect at Camp Nou, but could not develop his potential

Gai Assulin was a great prospect at Camp Nou, but could not develop his potential

A move to the Etihad under Roberto Mancini gave the Israeli a chance to start over, but seven loan appearances in Brighton, then at the Championship, were all he had to show for his efforts before returning to Spain with Racing, where he played regular first-team soccer for the first time, only for the team to suffer relegation from the Second Division.

He managed to stay in the second division after landing a transfer to Hercules, also relegated, before a transfer to Real Mallorca in 2014.

The chance to revive his career in Great Britain at Rangers ended abruptly when Mark Warburton did not offer him a contract after a trial and Assulin returned home to join Hapoel Tel Aviv in late 2015.

A move to Manchester City followed, but Israel was unable to play a single game for the club.

A move to Manchester City followed, but Israel was unable to play a single game for the club.

A move to Manchester City followed, but Israel was unable to play a single game for the club.

That period was short-lived as well, with the winger returning to Spain to join Sabadell before joining Kazakh club Kairat, currently in the Europa Conference League.

Assulin, now 30, now lives in Manchester as he seeks to earn another move to an English club following recent spells in Romania and Italy. Now married with a daughter, he wants to stay in one place for a while after a nomadic career.

“If I find a club elsewhere I’ll have to go, it’s work, but I’m talking to some clubs here in England, trying to create a profile here. I’ve been everywhere, but this is my home. ‘

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