BARCELONA

Samuel Umtiti: "Pep Guardiola's Barça were a bit boring"

The France defender spoke to ESPN and had his say on the football at Camp Nou under Guardiola: "I love the style, but when you keep the ball for 10 years..." Sporting vs Barcelona

Samuel Umtiti con el Barcelona.
Albert Gea REUTERS

Barcelona - Real Madrid Live

Barcelona central defender Samuel Umtiti has said that he preferred the side’s style of play under Frank Rijkaard and described Pep Guardiola’s possession-based tiki-taka philosophy as “boring” at times.

"I almost never missed their games"

In declarations picked up by ESPN, the France international spoke about Barcelona’s evolution over the past decade and the moment he fell in love with the side he joined in the summer: “The period with Ronaldinho and Deco when they won the Champions League [in 2006], When Frank Rijkaard was in charge I loved watching them play. Their style, the way they kept the ball, the way they moved around it... no other team did that like they did. There was an incredible winning culture. The players never seemed satisfied. I almost never missed one of their games.”

Guardiola style "a bit boring"

However, Umtiti says that after Guardiola took charge in 2008, “it became less interesting. I said to my friends: ‘I love Barça’s style of play, but when you keep hold of the ball for 10 years it’s a bit boring. After that Barcelona went back to developing their style.”