New Barcelona striker Robert Lewandowski has shared how Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola played a large role in his decision to join the Spanish club from Bayern Munich.
Lewandowski spent the better part of a decade with Bayern after joining the club from rivals Borussia Dortmund in 2014 and went on to become one of the world's elite strikers in that time. The Poland international's goalscoring record for the German side was nothing short of remarkable, scoring 344 goals in 375 games for the club while providing an extra 72 assists.
Despite now being 33 years of age, the forward was in fine form once again last season and is showing no signs of slowing down, scoring 35 goals in 34 games last campaign.
It looked like the striker had made Bayern his home but the 33-year-old made it clear to his former club that he was keen to join Barca this window, despite the club's financial issues.
Lewandowski scored his first goal for the Blaugrana on Sunday in a friendly against Mexican side Pumas UNAM and spoke afterward about a surprise influence in his move to the Spanish giants.
Speaking to Diario Sport via Football Espana, the Poland striker revealed that his former Bayern manager Guardiola played a major role in his desire to join Barca. “Guardiola’s philosophy and his style for caring for and managing the team was like bringing Barcelona to Bayern Munich.
“Xavi is very similar to Guardiola. They were both sixes and they worked together. They think about football in the same way. With that memory (of working with Guardiola) in mind, Barcelona was the only option for me. It was great preparation."
Lewandowski revealed that while he didn't directly contact Guardiola over his move to Barca, he feels that his time spent with the Spaniard at Bayern 'prepared' him for the transfer. “I didn’t talk to Guardiola before signing. But when I was with him at Bayern it was like a great preparation to come to Barcelona one day," he said.
"All the staff were Spanish and there were eight Spanish players. During that period I had a very good relationship with Thiago (Alcantara) and Javi Martinez. Both of them congratulated me when I signed for Barcelona.”
Lewandowski will be desperate to get off to a strong start with his new club but it has emerged today that Barca are still yet to register the Polish hitman as a La Liga player, due to their financial struggles. This could come as good news for City as it would seem the Spanish giants will be unable to afford Cityzens playmaker Bernardo Silva, whom the club have been persistently linked with all window.
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