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The Spanish coach is proud to be part of the Catalan club's history and had special words of praise for his assistant, who is recovering from a surgery on his parotid gland

Pep Guardiola confessed that he is honoured to be part of Barcelona and dedicated the Coach of the Year accolade to assistant Tito Vilanova.

The 40-year-old won the prestigious award, his first ever of the kind, after guiding Barca to five trophies in 2011, including the Champions League and the Fifa Club World Cup.

"I would like to dedicate this award to the thousands of people who have worked at Barca in the last 100 years and have helped build one of the best teams in the world," Guardiola said.

"It is an honour for me to be part of the group which has built this incredible team.

"From the bottom of my heart I would like to dedicate this title to Tito Vilanova, my friend, companion, assistant, who is always there, even though he has not been with us that much lately.

"Tito, this one is for you."

The assistant to Guardiola underwent an operation on his parotid gland in November and did not fly with the team to Japan, where Barca lifted the Club World Cup.

Guardiola was competing against Real Madrid's Jose Mourinho and Manchester United's Sir Alex Ferguson for the Coach of the Year award.

Starting in November and continuing through January, Goal.com is publishing exclusive extracts from Graham Hunter's highly-anticipated new book, 'Barca: The Making of the Greatest Team in the World'. Last Friday's extract took a closer look at the most influential figure in the club's history: Johan Cruyff: Don't miss it!

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