Ronald Koeman will continue as coach of Barcelona after weeks of uncertainty regarding his future. Club President Joan Laporta confirmed this on Thursday, June 3 saying, “After this period of reflection, vice-president Rafael Yuste and myself have agreed that we will continue with the current contract that Ronald Koeman has.”
Koeman had come under heavy pressure after losing the league title following a series of poor performances. Several meetings took place between Laporta and Koeman to discuss how the season ended. Laporta had reportedly asked for 15 days to look for a suitable replacement. However, the board believed Koeman was the most suitable person to lead the team with no big-name coach available. More so, the club would have had to pay Koeman somewhere between 8 million to 12 million euros should they have fired the Dutchman, per his contract. With the club’s poor economic condition, this was surely another big factor in deciding to keep the manager.
Plenty of rumors had emerged in the past weeks regarding who would replace Koeman should he have gotten sacked. The most prominent of those was former player and Barcelona great, Xavi Hernandez. Speculations grew after Xavi’s wife posted an Instagram story that showed the family packing nine suitcases for a vacation trip to Barcelona. Xavi, who coaches in the Qatar Stars League, just finished a successful season with Al-Saad in which he won the league title. However, rumors emerged that many in the club had doubts about the Spaniard due to his lack of coaching experience in Europe. There is no doubt Xavi will become the coach of Barcelona one day, but Barcelona fans will have to wait a while longer to see that happen.
Koeman was not Laporta’s preferred choice for the bench as the Dutchman was hired by previous club president, Josep Bartomeu. This season will be make-or-break for the Dutchman. His squad has already been reinforced with the signings of Kun Aguero, Eric Garcia and Emerson Royal. More so, the club is closing the signing of Memphis Depay and Georginio Wijnaldum. The Dutch manager must deliver results if he hopes to be at Barcelona beyond just this upcoming season.