Barcelona defender Gerard Pique said he was prepared to quit the club in 2011 due to coach Pep Guardiola.
Pique has opened up on how strenuous working under Manchester City manager Guardiola can be, claiming that the coach’s rivalry with then-Real boss Jose Mourinho was tiring for the players – to the point he took issue with him dating pop star Shakira at the start of 2011.
The defender told Marca: “We reached an important point of tension with him, and with the dressing room in general. The rivalry with José Mourinho was very exhausting.
“Pep wanted absolute control of everything that happened. I started dating Shakira and the relationship with him changed – now the relationship is perfect.
“I had a lot of pressure. I felt that in training I had to do everything perfect. If there was a moment in which I thought about leaving Barça, it was that season (the summer of 2011).”