The previous Real Sociedad, Vissel Kobe, and Real Oviedo manager Juanma Lillo joined Manchester City as Pep Guardiola’s assistant coach – a position he held with Sevilla and Chile under Jorge Sampaoli.
Lillo was in charge of the Qingdao Huanghai Chinese Club until the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic and the choice to make him Mikel Arteta’s replacement at the Etihad rejoined him with Guardiola, whom he coached at the finish of the playing career of the City Manager and with whom he had for some time been close. Guardiola regards a mentor to the 54-year-old.
In a statement on the City site, Lillo said: “I am pleased to have joined the coaching staff at Manchester City. My relationship with Pep returns for many years and as part of this energizing team, I am excited to go along with him.
In September 1996, Lillo initially met Guardiola, when the then Barcelona midfielder thumped on the entryway of Oviedo’s changing area after a match and asked to meet the man whose team had recently dazzled him to such an extent. He was profoundly dedicated to a positional game and with a reputation as a thinker.
In 2003, When Guardiola first agreed to join Barcelona as donning director, he had proposed to name Lillo as manager however they didn’t win the political race. He got together with presidential candidate Lluis Bassat. When Guardiola saw his play career at Dorados de Sinaloa in Mexico in 2005, he was his mentor and Lillo helped plan training meetings when the City Manager began his coaching career just because.
This is Lillo’s twentieth coaching spell in six nations incorporating Andrés Iniesta managing in Japan. After bringing Salamanca to the top flight in 1995, he became the most youthful manager at La Liga, aged 29. Lillo’s last time utilized in Spain as a director was with Almería. He was sacked after an 8-0 misfortune – to Barcelona’s Guardiola.