Guardiola is football's greatest influence in a decade, says Xavi


Former Barcelona star Xavi has hailed Pep Guardiola as the most influential figure in world football in a decade.

Barca won three LaLiga titles, two Champions Leagues and two Club World Cups among a host of honours during Guardiola's four-year spell in charge between 2008 and 2012.

The former midfielder subsequently took Bayern Munich to three consecutive Bundesliga titles, as well as two DFB-Pokals, the UEFA Super Cup and the Club World Cup, before replacing Manuel Pellegrini as Manchester City boss.

And Xavi is confident that his former coach will bring both significant success and a shift in football style to the Premier League.

"Pep improved all of us," he said at the Aspire4Sports event in Amsterdam. "He teaches you the why of things and conveys a lot.

"Plus, his way of understanding the game is the Barcelona way. He's been the most influential person in world football in the last 10 years.

"If anyone can change the dynamic of English football, it's Guardiola. He is influential, obsessive, a perfectionist. At City, they'll learn a lot from him and enjoy it, in a few months they're already starting to see his style."

Guardiola won his first 10 matches as City boss before they were held to a 3-3 draw by Celtic in the Champions League and then suffered a 2-0 loss to Tottenham on Sunday.