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Guardiola backs Bielsa, admits to spying incidents at Barcelona and Bayern Munich

January 18, 2019 By Emmanuel K. Budu-Annor
The Spanish manager has jumped to the defense of the Leeds United boss in the spygate scandal.

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has backed Marcelo Bielsa in the ongoing spygate scandal by claiming that similar tactics were used by clubs to get information about his Barcelona and Bayern Munich sides.

The Leeds United boss has been criticized for supposedly breaking a 'moral code' after sending an employee of his side to spy on Frank Lampard's Derby County before last Friday's 2-0 win in the Championship. On Wednesday, the 63-year-old Argentinian manager called a press conference to explain his actions.

There, he admitted that he gathers a hefty chunk of information on all his opponents in his pre-match preparations and delivers the knowledge to his players through a PowerPoint presentation.

Although many have since called for Bielsa to be sanctioned for his actions, Pep Guardiola maintains a different view. The 48 years old City boss insists the respect he holds for the man he regarded as a mentor in the past remains intact despite certain individuals branding his actions as unethical.

"No, the respect remains absolutely the same. He was absolutely clear in his statement," Guardiola told a press conference ahead of Sunday's Premier League encounter with Huddersfield Town.

"If I have admired before and he has done that [spying] in the past, why should I change my opinion? "I understand Frank Lampard too. Both positions are more than understandable.

"In other countries, everybody does that.

"It is the culture of the clubs. It was part of the club. Not because you said, 'You have to do it'. It is the leagues.

"When we were training at Bayern Munich, there were people in the little mountains with cameras and the opponent was watching what we did. Everybody did it. [But] I am not going to send anyone to spy on Huddersfield!.

"I didn't see the whole press conference [from Bielsa] but I saw the highlights.

"No manager has the amount of information he [Bielsa] produces for every single game, for every single player and every single movement. It is unique what he does.

"I cannot talk about what the other managers do but the truth is everybody wants to know everything, not just in football but in society. Everybody spies on everybody in society. They want to see what happens with this person or the gossip about this man or that man. Everyone is curious about what other people say."

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