Ronald Koeman has been chosen as new Barcelona manager who will take over from Quique Setién who has reportedly been sacked following the capitulation at the hands of FC Bayern Munich.
The former Barcelona player, and assistant manager, will leave his role as Netherlands coach to take over at Camp Nou in time for the new season.
Setién’s days looked numbered even before the humiliating 8-2 defeat against Bayern Munich on Friday and he will leave after seven uncomfortable months.
Barcelona finished five points behind Real Madrid in the league and lost to Athletic Bilbao at the quarter-final stage in the Spanish Cup. It is the first time in the past 12 years that the club have ended a season trophyless.
Koeman had already turned Barça down, in January, when the club were looking for a replacement for Ernesto Valverde, but this time he could not resist the challenge.
The original preference for the Barça president, Josep Maria Bartomeu, was to hire Mauricio Pochettino but some board members were against that considering the former Espanyol manager once said that “he would rather go and work on a farm than manage Barcelona”.
The Dutchman played for Barcelona for six years during a highly successful career that saw him win La Liga four times, as well as the Copa Del Rey and European Cup.
He featured 350 times for the Spanish giants Koeman and continues to carry his Barcelona affections with him everywhere he goes. The 57-year-old even has a personalised ‘BAR’ number plate on his black Bentley Continental to reference his link to the club. The 57-year-old also spent times as assistant manager to Louis van Gaal between 1998 and 2000 – only increasing his desire to become the main man.
He has made no secret of his hopes to return to the team in a managerial capacity, confirming he had a clause in his contract with the Netherlands team that allowed him to move to Barca after Euro 2020.