Guardiola is the only coach to have already won this competition twice, in 2009 and 2011 with Barcelona, media reported on Monday.

"This tournament is very important, very prestigious. It's not easy to qualify for it nor to win it," Guardiola said.

"You don't have the good fortune to take part in this competition very often in your life as a professional footballer and I'd like to express my gratitude to the team and (predecessor) Juup Heynckes because thanks to them I am here today," he added.

On Tuesday, Guardiola will meet the Chinese club coached by Italian 2006 World Cup-winning coach Marcello Lippi, who reappeared in China in 2012 after a two-year hiatus following his second spell in charge of the Italian national team.

Lippi has been impressed with Guardiola's career so far.

"Guardiola is an intelligent and capable person. We've seen what he's done with Barcelona and Bayern, he's changed teams but kept on winning," said the 65-year-old.

Lippi knows his team has little chance of upsetting the odds. "We're going to play against one of the best teams in the world. When you play a match against a team like this, out of 100 matches you lose 99 but you can win one and I hope that will be the next one. You never know,” he said.


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