Barcelona Appoints New Coach! Goodbye Quique, Welcome Ronald

Dutchman, Ronald Koeman has been named the new head coach of Barcelona two days after the club sacked Quique Setien. 

Barcelona were severely battered 8-2 by Germany side Bayern Munich last week in their one-legged quarterfinal clash in Lisbon, Portugal. 

With a defeat that heavy, Setién’s sack didn’t come a surprise, it was rather pretty much anticipated. 

The Spaniard took the reigns as head coach of Barcelona on the 13th of January, 2020 and during his seven months in charge of the Catalan side, Setién recorded 16 wins, 4 draws and 5 defeats from 25 matches. 

It wasn’t just the defeat to Bayern Munich, although that was the heaviest blow of the all, it wasn’t the best season for the Catalans who endured a troubling and below average campaign that saw them go from being roughly 12 points ahead or Real Madrid to finishing second in the La Liga, 5 points behind Real Madrid, the eventual league winners,  their shameful dismissal from the Champions League also meant that the Spanish giants(I’m sure they still reserve some right to be referred to as that… ) failed to win a trophy for the first time since 2007-08.

Now, in dire need of an overhaul, Barcelona have recruited the services of their former player, Ronald Koeman, joining the likes of Chelsea with Frank Lampard Manchester United with Ole Gunnar Solksjaer, Juventus with the newly appointed Pirlo following the recent Sack of Maurizio Sarri at the end of the 2019/2020 campaign and even Real Madrid with Zinedine Zidane as another big club to be coached by a former player. 

The 57-year-old left his role as Netherlands boss, with two years left on his contract, to sign a two-year deal with the Spanish giants.

Koeman at Barcelona

He played for Barcelona between 1989 and 1995, helping them to four league titles, one Copa del Rey, three Supercooa de Espana and the 1992 European Cup were he scored the winning goal which earned him ‘the hero of Wembley ’92’ tag. Koeman scored 88 goals in 264 appearances for the Catalans.

Koeman’s coaching history

Koeman had his first taste of coaching when he was assistant to national team coach Guus Hiddink during the 1998 World Cup, before becoming Louis van Gaal’s right-hand man at the Nou Camp from 1998 to 2000.

He eventually went on to record success as a manager back in his homeland, winning league titles with Ajax and PSV.  A brief stint at Valencia in 2007 brought Copa del Rey success, but he was sacked after the side finished only two points above the relegation zone in La Liga. After spells at AZ Alkmaar and Feyenoord, Koeman was appointed by Southampton in 2014 where he recorded huge success, guiding the Premier League club to seventh- and sixth-place finishes, which resulted in qualification for the Europa League group stage. Everton asked for his services in 2017 and got it, but disappointingly his time at Goodison Park only lasted 16 months as Koeman was shown the exist door with the club in the bottom three.

That disappointment was soon forgotten in February 2018, when he was appointed coach of the Dutch national team, who had failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup. Koeman led the side to the final of the Uefa Nations League and helped them qualify for Euro 2020.

As part of it’s reconstruction project, the club also announced Ramon Planes as the new technical director. He was the assistant to Eric Abidal, who left his role as sporting director following a mutual agreement on Tuesday.

Koeman isn’t the first former Barcelona player to be named head coach and unsurprisingly, it is his dream job, but with the current state of the club (Barcelona is in shambles, don’t let anyone tell you otherwise), one can’t help but ask the inevitable and obvious question, is Koeman the Man for the Job?Let us know what you think about Koeman’s appointment in the comment section. 

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