Pep Guardiola loses second in command Juanma Lillo to Al-Sadd

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola will be on the look out for a new Assistant Manager this summer after Juanma Lillo confirmed his exit on Friday.

Lillo, who had joined City in 2020, spent two years working with Guardiola following many more using each other as a sounding board for their ideas. Guardiola had previously marked Lillo out as a reference point for his own coaching too.

He will be taking over at Qatari club Al-Sadd, as per Sport, from whence Xavi Hernandez came before becoming Barcelona manager. He will join Santi Cazorla there and replaces former Valencia manager Javi Gracia, with Al-Sadd clearly pursuing a style of play built in Iberia.

“My time at Manchester City has been one of the most enjoyable periods of my career,” he told the club website.

“To work alongside Pep, his backroom staff and this group of players has been a pleasure and I hope to have contributed in a small way to the fantastic success we have enjoyed on the pitch. I wish the club the very best and hope they can achieve all of their ambitions moving forwards.”

Much of Lillo’s career has been spent as a manager and working by Guardiola’s side was only his third role as an assistant during his long career. Beginning in 1981, over the past 41 years Lillo has hopped from club to club, only spending more than a season at 4 of the 21 teams he has worked with.

Tags Al-Sadd Barcelona Juanma Lillo Manchester City Pep Guardiola
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