Wednesday Kickoff: Pep accepts blame for Bayern blowout, Tottenham deny DeBoer approach, and more



After suffering the worst defeat of his illustrious coaching career, Pep Guardiola wasn’t about to pass the blame to anybody but himself.

The Bayern Munich manager was apologetic after his team’s 4-0 trouncing by Real Madrid, going as far as saying he made a mistake in his approach to guiding Bayern into their Champions League semifinal.

“We played badly. That’s my responsibility,” Guardiola said. “We are at the highest level in Europe and such errors are punished.

“I’ll try to lift the players.”

Guardiola also shot down notions that he might be considering leaving Bayern, stating clearly he plans on sticking with the Bundesliga champions.

Bayern Munich still have the German Cup Final to play for as they close out the Bundesliga season having already won the league title back in March.

Here are some more news items to get your Wednesday going:


It’s no secret that Tottenham are considering finding a new manager to take over the club this summer, but the club denied any contact made with another team.

Tottenham released an official statement on Wednesday saying, “Reports that we have made approaches to other clubs regarding coaching staff are wholly inaccurate. We have NOT contacted any club regarding coaching appointments.”

The reports referred to in the statement are about Ajax telling BBC Sport that Tottenham have been in touch over manager Frank de Boer, who has won four straight league titles with the Amsterdam club.


If Manchester City accept UEFA’s Financial Fair Play punishment, they could be restricted from registering a full 25-man Champions League squad and face a heavy fine. (REPORT)

A week after being fired by Manchester United, David Moyes has been spotted escaping that disappointing by taking a trip to Miami. (REPORT)

Real Madrid midfielder Xavi Alonso called the yellow card suspension rule unfair after being suspended for the Champions League final. (REPORT)

Roy Hodgson will name his England World Cup squad on May 12. (REPORT)


What do you think of these developments? Glad to see a manager actually shoulder the blame for a team loss rather than blaming players of the referee? Who would you hire to coach Tottenham if you were in charge? Think UEFA will hand down a serious punishment to Manchester City or see the Citizens getting a slap on the wrist for their Financial Fair Play violations?

Share your thoughts below.

    • biff

      Heartbreaking. And it appears to me that the ref was considering stuffing the yellow card back his pocket before Xabi stood up which is what he should have done. Would have evened out his not giving Dante a red-card for the tackle on Ronaldo that could left him seriously injured and out of the World Cup. Not to mention Ribery slapping Carvahal while Boateng is jabbing a finger in his cheek.


      • CJ

        I agree with you biff. I thought that it was clear that Xabi did not follow through with the challenge, as he saw that he was not going to win the ball. I also agree that Dante deserved the red for his challenge on CR7. There was no embellishment there, and had Ronaldo not jumped out of the way, he could have been seriously injured. I am not a huge fan of Ronaldo, but I respect his talent. And I hated his diving antics while he was at MU, but he has gotten better about it. I conclude by saying that a lesser player might have been planted there, and that could have ended his season.

        Also, Ribery was angry, and he played like it: dirty. He definitely threw some unnecessary elbows, and perhaps should have seen red for all the stuff he got away with.


  • biff

    It’s not really a surprise that Madrid won the tie to move on to the Final. Bayern has been sputtering for several weeks now, drawing against Hoffenheim, and getting beat by Augsburg and the trounced by Dortmund and looking very shaky in the CL quarter finals against mid-level team coached by David Moyes and then barely able to beat Eintracht Braunschweig. The surprise is that Bayern imploded and allowed Madrid to score five goals without scoring a single goal over two games.

    Unbelievable and this is only the first crack in the strange marriage of FC Bayern and Pep Guardiola. He’s already hinting about the need to bring in new players to a team that has even more talent than the magnificent Jupp Heynckes last year won the treble with and this is going to create massive shock waves in Germany as the World Cup approaches. Grab your popcorn. This is gonna be fun to watch with the next act this weekend when Bayern plays a desperate Hamburg, which must win or face a drop to the 2. Bundesliga and will be fighting Bayern like caged animals for 3 must have points.


    • Nate Dollars

      well, i agree that pep needs to bring new players into his team. it’s not that they’re lacking in talent–it’s that they’re not the right kind of players.

      it is on pep if he thought that this bayern team could still play the high-pressing, patient possession game that he insists on. but if bayern keep him on (if!), they’ll understand that only a certain type of player can (or will) excel in that system.

      that’s the risk of hiring an idealist-type for a manager who needs to work within his system, as opposed to a flexible type (like ancelotti) who will work with whatever system his players need.


      • Increase

        They do have some guys that don’t fit but Pep has to be more Flexible. He changed the formation but he didn’t change the tactics between games. He is going to have to lower his desire for purity. It’s not gunna work unless Bayern buy Messi. (Which might be viable in a year if Barsca keeps having horrible things happen to them.)


  • biff

    Klinsmann should pay heed to Roy’s quotes in the linked news story.

    “I’m not going to make decisions in the last week or two of the season, which is a notoriously bad time to judge talent,” said Hodgson. “I don’t judge players on their last-minute form. Nothing that happens in the last four games, in terms of form, is going to affect me.”


    • Increase

      What you are saying is… Cut Clint Dempsey.


      I know I’m being difficult, but one could argue that his hot streak is “last minute form.” What I’m saying is you can’t ignore it but it can’t be everything.


  • Gerard D.

    United board is allegedly stating that the new coach must use the existing coaching staff. Odd.


  • Brad C

    I hate the yellow card acumulation rule. Each game should be it’s own entity. A yellow card is supposed to be a warning, not a punishment. Red Card suspensions I think are fair, but a suspension for a couple yellow cards in 3-5 games is nuts, hurts the team, hurts the quality of the game, and hurts the fans enjoyment of it.


    • reignman

      Disagree with this, a player should be punished for making of habit of dishing out harsh challenges. However there is no way that yellow card accumulation should affect a final, that is unacceptable. This rule needs to be looked at by UEFA, I’m surprised it hasn’t, didn’t the 2012 final have a couple big names suspended for it?


  • MiamiAl

    When you lose a playoff game 4-0 at home, and you give up 2 goals in the first 30 mins, you better accept blame! Coaching is clearly responsible for Bayern’s loss. Guardiola did not prepare his team for what they were to face. Maybe Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona years were a fluke??? Once Tika Taka was found out and defeated, the system won’t win you the big game against a solid defending/counter attacking opposition.

    R.I.P- Tika Taka (2008-2014)


      • scweeb

        Sure they can say i didn’t play my best. But when it comes down to it the tactics is what cost them CL. And that is all on the coach.


      • Increase

        Oh they do, but Pep made it harder for the players than it needed to be. His refusal to play Martinez and to adapt to a team as skilled as Real was silly.

        Manu played a similar system and it almost worked. He knew Real was gunna do something similar and didn’t prepare for it.


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