The rhetoric it’s a fly paper. Sooner or later it sticks to you, imprisons you in a role you never thought you’d play. And it won’t let you go anymore. From Saturday evening Pep Guardiola he finds himself mired in a sea of black ink. Why talk about the final of Champions League lost since Manchester City above all it means talking about his coach. Some pour molasses, others spill bile. Talking about Catalan now means taking part in one crusade, to a war of religion which cannot end with a armistice, but only with the annihilation of those who do not think the same way. No shades, no shades. Either white or black. OR santo O heretic. Few characters have been so polarizing. The man of Santpedor he is as much loved as he is detested. Often regardless, perhaps in parts that are not equal but equally noisy. His apostles they carry on an evangelization that is based on the essence. The verb is born with that Barcelona where each performer was a soloist and orchestra at the same time, where the individual phases were broken up to become one the premise of the other, where the beauty of his football, in a sort of kalokagathìa Greek, becomes the bearer of moral values. A charge that has not faded with time, but has acquired intensity.
Guardiola doesn’t just train, he revolutionizes. He does not change the position of his players on the pitch, but reinterprets the roles. The Catalan has upset the classic concept of goalkeeper, full-back, striker (and space). He hybridized them, somehow. And he opened one second phase of the game. Her experimentation it is permanent, it is simple but at the same time bizarre. No idea has time to fossilize that is already forced to evolve again. A subversion of the pre-established football which has turned him into the most important coach of the last thirty years. And there is no defeat, however painful, that can dent this image. A passionate and rather faithful reading to reality, which however crystallized the figure of Guardiola, transforming it into pure light. Pep has become holy man e santino, a designer lent to football, one Steve Jobs with bolted shoes. The dissidents respond by betting everything on concreteness. Come St. Thomas they rely on the index, which does not explore plagues, but cold budget lines. In his career Pep has spent, indeed, he has made to spend, as well one and a half billion euros. Two hundred and five million got them out of the Bavaria Monacor, 924 million the Manchester City. A huge amount. Because those talents, in the end, never yielded what they hoped for.
In recent years, Guardiola has not only lost the Champions League. He was also the architect of those defeats, he was the blacksmith of his (un) fortune. After observing the Chelsea raise the big-eared cup to the sky, in England they wanted to underline the self-inflicted nature of that defeat. Why the choice to give up a cover midfielder like Rodri O Fernandinho has transformed Gundogan, the top scorer of the season, in the most backward man. And it allowed Chelsea to make the most of their characteristics. The criticism most often wielded against Santpedor’s man is that of overthinking big games, that is to think too much on the eve of the big match, to the point of becoming crazy. Yet it is precisely from one of these brain-squeezes that, before a Classic at the Bernabeu, Guardiola entrusted the leading role to Messi hijacking Eto’o on the band. He was born on false nine. Football had changed. Now the eliminations against Lyon, Tottenham, Liverpool and Monaco have matured in a different way but with the same premise: the choice to dismount a few hours after the match gear spinning beautifully. Someone reproaches him not for being a genius, but for wanting to win in a way he can claim urbi et orbi his genius.
In a nice article published after the defeat in the quarter-finals against Spurs, it was said that the Champions League is the cup of the details. And it is not for one detail that the judgment on Guardiola can be changed. True. Indeed, very true. Only now the inquisitors of Pep affirm the greatness of Pep can no longer disregard the attention to those details. It is difficult for one of the supporters of one of the two theses to come to terms with the other. Also because Guardiola is not very linear and therefore divisive. There spontaneity of its beginnings has been lost. And it couldn’t be otherwise. Pep plays with his media overexposure, he feeds her with his sweatshirts, with his gestures, with his political commitment. His behaviors seem as well studied as his schemes. He dispenses compliments to all his opponents (many have been collected in a of Emanuele Atturo its Last Man), as a Fabio Fazio any. Kiss the silver medal before Chelsea lift the Champions League to the skies. A gesture that tells a extreme sportsmanship but to what a good dose of paraculism, which wants to underline the goodness of a path regardless of success, relativizing the very concept of (lack of) victory. Surviving the double rhetoric about Pep Guardiola is becoming increasingly difficult. It’s a total debate e all-encompassing which does not include contact points. Although perhaps the truth lies in the middle. The coach who has revolutionized football the most is also not the most successful. And maybe he doesn’t even want to be. That’s all.