The midfielder believes the impact of his former coach has been far reaching, with other managers attempting to replicate his passing philosophy
Barcelona midfielder Javier Mascherano says Pep Guardiola “improved a lot of teams in a lot of leagues” with the tiki-taka style he implemented while in charge at Camp Nou.
The Spaniard pioneered his passing philosophy, focused on fast, short passes and pressing the opposition high up the pitch in a striker-less formation, during four success-laden years in the Barca dug-out.
That model has since been replicated by a number of sides across the globe, while Guardiola himself has sought to transplant that style into his Bayern Munich side in the Bundesliga.
As a result Mascherano believes the 43-year-old has unintentionally helped a number of teams become better and raised the quality of football across Europe.
“Guardiola was a perfectionist,” he said to Fox Sports. “He took us the closest to excellence and perfection. The best teams have a style, a philosophy of playing.
“Barcelona showed you can win everything while playing beautiful football at a time when it was believed that you could not win in style.
“Without wanting to disrespect other teams and coaches, Guardiola created a winning style that a lot of teams then copied. Barcelona did not only improve themselves, but improved a lot of teams in a lot of leagues.”
Guardiola departed Barcelona in 2012 and embarked upon a year-long sabbatical before returning to management with Bayern, replacing Jupp Heynckes in the Allianz Arena hotseat in 2013.
He lifted the Bundesliga and the DFB-Pokal in his first season in charge but suffered a humiliating 5-0 aggregate defeat to Real Madrid over two legs in the Champions League semi-finals last term.