Friday, October 29, 2021

Coming Barcelona manager?

Ronald Koeman had to go after another recent loss of FC Barcelona, this time against Rayo Vallecano in the Spanish League. While Lionel Messi's exit and the clubs financial troubles were bound to affect the Catalan powerhouse, the impact has been much worse than was expected. That said, it is not only due to Messi's exit; already before the Argentine wizard leaving, the team appeared in trouble and largely depending on Messi. Without Messi, Koeman's tactical weaknesses have been exposed, because the team has sufficient talented players to be competitive. Koeman's plan with the team does not appear clear, and perhaps a new manager can give a push to the club and its talented players.

FC Barcelona is a complicated football club to manage (they are, indeed as their motto says "more than a club"), and a manager should know well the culture of the club. Koeman knew the club from his playing career, but did not manage to steer them in the right direction. The next manager appears likely to be another legend of the club: Xavi Hernandez, who left the club in 2015 after winning everything, is set to return. His experience as manager has only been at Qatar's Al Sadd, where he has won one League title, but his in-depth knowledge of the club makes him an obvious candidate for manager, perhaps to retake what other former players have done at their former clubs.

It will be a challenge for Xavi, but interesting to follow whatever happens at FC Barcelona.

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