Pep Guardiola
Pep Guardiola

Bayern Munich boss Pep Guardiola has recognised the reasons he had to leave Barcelona after claiming 14 titles, according to Spanish reports.

Former Barcelona coach Guardiola has given a hard-hitting interview with, saying: "I left the club because I could not motivate my players.

"If you cannot motivate them, as a coach, you know that the time to leave has arrived."

Asked to name the lowest points in his time at the Camp Nou, he said: "There have been sad moments. When Barcelona, in 2012, lost in the semifinals of the Champions League against Chelsea was one of them.

"We were much better than our rivals but we conceded an unnecessary goal in the return, and before we realised it, we were out. That was a big loss to me, I felt like I could not rise my team again."

Guardiola added that he had to take a break before assuming control at Bayern Munich's bench, saying: "Leading a team requires tons of energy.

"In other words, there are moments when you need to recharge the batteries. That is what I did when I took a year off in New York – that was very important to me, to my family and also to my previous team,."

Guardiola also admitted that the successes in Barcelona also generated a kind of saturation that made it increasingly difficult for him to motivate himself as well as the team.

He said: "We were incredibly successful. Fourteen titles in just four years, it was the best period in the history of the club.

"But that can also be a millstone. I found it progressively more difficult to motivate myself and the team. In Barcelona I had already won everything as a player and as a coach. And I realised that the team was finding it increasingly difficult."

The Catalan boss said there is no magic formula for success, and, when asked how he felt managing a team full of stars, he said: "With that many stars in the line-up, as we have at Bayern Munich or my former team Barca, you can get to situations where the diversity can also be destructive.

"Everyone wants to play but you can only put eleven players on the pitch at the same time.

"The players who I left as substitutes are not likely to be happy with my decision. And then there is the pressure from the press and fans, of having to select certain players.

"Whenever I left [Leo] Messi on the bench, for example, the mess was assembled in Barcelona," he admitted.

However Guardiola is remembered at the Camp Nou as the most popular figure in Barcelona history, claiming 14 titles in just four years – two Champions Leagues, three La Liga titles, two Club World Cups, two European Supercups, three Spanish Supercups and two Copa del Rey victories.