The Dutchman is said to be viewed positively as a person, but there are elements of his footballing philosophy that are grating with some of the players.
Barcelona played their first match under Koeman just over ten weeks ago and have performed inconsistently. They currently sit ninth in La Liga and finished second in their Champions League group behind Juventus.
A key complaint is said to relate to Koeman’s steadfast reliance on a 4-2-3-1 formation as opposed to the 4-3-3 historically associated with Barcelona.
The belief is that the team is divided between four who attack and four who defend, with a double pivot in the middle falling between two stools, as it were, resulting in an absence of cohesive defending or attacking.
There is also a complaint about a lack of fluidity within Koeman’s system, creating spaces for opponents and making it difficult for the Blaugrana to create opportunities in the final third, forcing Lionel Messi to drop deep to collect the ball.
The dressing room are also said to be conscious that no player is flourishing under Koeman’s tutelage and the system has not improved the performance of any player, either, only making it worse if anything.
The lack of a lethal striker like Luis Suarez is said to be cited as a key reason for the failure of Koeman’s beloved 4-2-3-1, as it means that Barcelona fail to have an attacking reference that could create openings for the other forwards.
Featured image courtesy of Diario Sport.