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Pique claims relationship with Guardiola “changed’ when Shakira dating began

Pique began dating Shakira in 2011 and has been with the pop megastar since but the pair being together “changed” the Barcelona defender’s relationship with then-manager Guardiola

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Gerard Pique has claimed his relationship with Pep Guardiola “changed’ when he started dating Shakira.

The Barcelona star spent four years under Guardiola’s tutelage, winning three La Liga titles and two Champions Leagues during their time together.

Now 34, Pique is in the twilight years of his career but remains a key part of the Barca back line as Ronald Koeman’s side bid to rebuild after losing Lionel Messi to Paris Saint-Germain during the summer transfer window.

Since 2011, the local hero has been in a relationship with pop megastar Shakira, whom he shares two children with but is not married to.

But Pique has revealed that dating the singer-songwriter effected how he and Guardiola got on at the Camp Nou during their final year together.



Guardiola and Pique spent four trophy-laden seasons together at Barcelona
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Image:

REUTERS)




Pique told comedy programme La Sotana, via Marca: “We reached an important point of tension with him, and with the dressing room in general. The Mourinho theme wears a lot. Pep wants absolute control of everything that happens.

“I started dating Shakira and the relationship with him changes,” the former Manchester United defender claimed.

“Now the relationship is perfect. I had a lot of pressure and, if there was one moment, I could think of leaving is [after the season of] 11-12.”

2012 was the year Guardiola exited the Nou Camp after Jose Mourinho’s Real Madrid claimed the Spanish title with a 100-point haul.



Pique’s relationship with Shakira “changed” things with Guardiola
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Image:

Getty)




The Blaurgana stalwart described that as his worst season to date, despite critics believing he has been past his best for the last few years.

Pique also leapt the defence of fellow centre-back Samuel Umtiti, who has been booed while warming up during the opening stages of the new term for remaining at the club after Koeman informed him that he is not part of his plans.

“He is fulfilling the contract with all the obligations,” said the former Spain international. “People have to be empathic. [His] attitude is impeccable. [He] have never missed a workout.

“Another thing is who signed the contract? A president who was voted by the partners. Why do we whistle?”









He added: “Most people have been in a company for 30 years and do nothing. If I were in another club, for example at United, I would be doing the same as Umtiti.

“Every situation is different. I only ask that people be empathic.”

Pique recently took a wage cut in order to ease his boyhood club’s financial woes, a deal made that ensured he will remain a Barcelona player until 2024 rather than the extension of his contract being dependant on appearances.







He told Movistar after scoring in his side’s 4-2 victory over Real Sociedad on the opening weekend of the La Liga campaign: “I was born and raised here.

“I have done what I had to do, with the reduction we have been in contact with the captains and I know that they will also take the step, it is a matter of timing.

“I did it quickly for the registrations,” Pique stated. “We are a family. We will fight together.”




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