Netherlands boss Ronald Koeman will soon return to Barcelona as manager, according to club legend Carles ‘Charly’ Rexach.
Rexach spent a 16-year playing career at the Camp Nou and has been involved in multiple capacities for the club since, including various brief stints as boss.
He told the Cadena Ser network, via Diario Sport: “Koeman will return to Barça . He has time, he is young.
“On many occasions he has come close to returning – he has a lot of experience and a lot of personality.”
In March, the former central defender explained that the Blaugrana approached him with a view to succeeding Valverde – a role which was eventually fulfilled by Quique Setien – as he has a commitment to the Netherlands national team.
Koeman said, as cited by Diario Sport: “Yes, it’s true that Barca spoke to me but I said no because I’m with the national team and I have a commitment to stay in this role.”
According to a report in Catalan newspaper Mundo Deportivo from November, director of the Dutch FA Nico-Jan Hoogma revealed an option in Koeman’s contract to join the Blaugrana this summer.
Hoogma confirmed in an interview back in September that Koeman does have a clause in his contract that would allow him to leave for Barcelona.
He stated that whilst Koeman’s current deal with the Dutch national side runs until 2022, he has a clause which would have allowed him to join the La Liga champions after the European Championships which had been planned for this summer, but have now been delayed by a year.
He also indicated that there would be a release clause in place for such a deal, although declined to comment on the details of it, but confirmed that it applies solely to Barcelona.
“I have two more years of contract with the national team and I don’t like to talk about Barça,” Koeman said in December, as cited by Marca.
“It’s uncomfortable for many reasons, now I have a job and it’s not fair to talk about this. If that opportunity comes then it comes and if it doesn’t come, it doesn’t come.
“There are more important things in life, but never say never.”
Koeman made 192 appearances as a Barcelona player, between 1989 and 1995, winning four La Liga titles and a European Cup in 1992.
Before returning as assistant to to Louis Van Gaal between 1998 and 2000, winning another league title in the process.
“The greatest talent I ever coached was Ronaldo but at the same time he was the player who created the most problems for me in the dressing room. He used to throw parties and do everything. Once Van Nistelrooy said to me: ‘Coach, the dressing room smells like alcohol’.” Find out who which manager said this right here.