Guardiola Blasts Barca Over Claims He Didn’t Visit Ailing Vilanova.

Pep Guardiola.
Pep Guardiola.

Bayern Munich manager Pep Guardiola has hit out at Barcelona after his former club’s president Sandro Rosell criticised him for not visiting Tito Vilanova in New York during his year’s sabbatical.

Tito Vilanova has struggled to keep up with the challenges of managing Barcelona since taking over the job and had been forced to take time off to seek treatment for cancer of the parotid.

Meanwhile, Guardiola has accused Barca of not keeping to their word to “leave him in peace.” The Spaniard also accused Rosell of using his former assistant Vilanova’s illness to personally attack him.

“I told them (the president and his director) I was going 6,000km away and asked them to leave me in peace but they haven’t kept their word,” Guardiola told the media in Lake Garda, where Bayern are holding a pre-season training camp.

“I did my time (at Barcelona) then decided to leave.

“I want them to get on with the job and I wish them all the success in the world, because their success will also be mine- I don’t need to say what I feel for this club.

“Too many things have happened that have crossed the line.

“I will never forget that they used Tito’s illness to cause me damage, because it’s a lie that I never saw him in New York.

“I saw him once and the reason I didn’t see him more often was because it wasn’t possible, and that wasn’t my fault.

“To say that I don’t wish the best of someone who was my colleague for so many years is very bad taste, and I didn’t expect that.

“If any of the things I’ve said is not true, come out and rebut it, but it has to be them (Rosell and the board), not intermediaries or Barcelona messengers. Them.”

Barcelona vice-president Jordi Cardoner has since denied Guardiola’s claims.

In an interview with newspaper Mundo Deportivo, he said: “We have not used Tito’s illness to go against him and whoever does such a thing is a bad person.”

Guardiola ended his four-year spell as manager at the Camp Nou in 2012. He has since taken over at Bayern.