Ronald Koeman was yesterday confirmed as Barcelona coach for next season. It was something that was up in the air until then, with president Joan Laporta clearly not entirely convinced that the Dutchman was the right man to bring the club forward. Appointed by Josep Maria Bartomeu, the now-disgraced former president, there was always the current of thought that Laporta wanted his own man.
Koeman took over Barcelona at a tough moment, in the wake of the 8-2 beating at the hands of Bayern Munich in the Champions League and just before Lionel Messi tried to leave the club by force. He steadied the ship and oversaw an excellent middle third of the season, during which Barcelona won the Copa del Rey in some style. The manner of their defeat to Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League, however, coupled with their late-season collapse in La Liga, spelled trouble for his continuity.
“I’m relieved to say that my players and staff can fully focus on the new season now,” Koeman wrote. “The last few weeks have been intense, but I’m glad that President Joan Laporta gave his support to me and calm has been restored. The focus of everyone at the club is the same; building a winning Barcelona and achieving success.”
— Ronald Koeman (@RonaldKoeman) June 4, 2021