Chelsea face their biggest task of the season on Wednesday night when they host Guardiola's all-conquering side in the first leg of their Champions League semi-final.
Upon taking charge at Stamford Bridge last summer, Andre Villas-Boas embarked on a new project which centred on fazing out Chelsea's veterans such as Frank Lampard and Didier Drogba and introduce a new crop of hungry young stars in their place.
Unfortunately for the Portuguese, the move backfired, with Villas-Boas leaving the club last month after a dreadful run of form and reports of disharmony within the Stamford Bridge dressing room.
His successor Roberto Di Matteo has turned to Chelsea's trusted lieutenants since the 34-year-old's departure and the move has worked, with Chelsea winning nine of the Italian's 12 games in charge.
Many claim the likes of Lampard (33), Drogba (34) and even John Terry (31) are on the wane, but Guardiola disagrees.
"I do admire that generation of players," Guardiola said.
"They have done so well over the last seven years and have got into so many semi-finals and finals, and competed in the Premier League so well.
"That's not easy, so I do admire what they have achieved. It will be exciting to play them."
Despite being four points behind leaders Real Madrid, Barcelona have played some of the best football the world has ever seen this year and with the likes of Andres Iniesta, Xavi and, of course, Lionel Messi, it is easy to see why they are overwhelming favourites to progress.
But Chelsea's recent resurgence under Di Matteo has left Guardiola with much to worry about, it seems.
Guardiola added: "They have John Terry, Ashley Cole, Frank Lampard, Michael Essien, Didier Drogba ... They are players who have had thousands and thousands of adventures.
"I saw what they did against Tottenham," Guardiola added, referring to Chelsea's 5-1 win over their rivals at Wembley on Sunday.
Guardiola's last visit to Stamford Bridge ended in success after Andres Iniesta fired home a 93rd minute away goal to take his team through to the Champions League final for the first time in his reign.