Word stemming from the European media on Monday suggests that Ronald Koeman’s future at Barcelona is no longer as certain as once thought.
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Dutchman Koeman was of course installed on the bench at the Camp Nou last summer, on the back of Quique Setien’s dismissal.
And to say that the ex-Blaugrana star has since endured a bumpy ride back in Catalunya would be putting it lightly.
To his credit, Koeman has already secured his first piece of silverware as Barca boss, after overseeing a 4-0 drubbing of Athletic Bilbao in last month’s Copa del Rey final.
MAGIC FROM MESSI! 🤯🙌
A moment of absolute genius, vintage Barcelona, and they’re now well on their way to picking up another Copa del Rey trophy 🔵🔴 pic.twitter.com/SWWOhMEIkB
— Premier Sports 📺 (@PremierSportsTV) April 17, 2021
In La Liga, meanwhile, Barcelona have done remarkably to reestablish themselves in the thick of the title race over the last couple of months, on the back of a dismal opening half to the campaign.
However, when it has truly mattered most, Koeman’s men have too often simply failed to step up to the plate.
Just this weekend, for example, the Catalans stuttered to a costly 0-0 stalemate at home to Atletico Madrid, blowing their chance to leapfrog Diego Simeone’s men to the La Liga summit.
In the aftermath of the clash, it was then revealed that their haul of just a solitary point across four league meetings with the two giants of Madrid this season marks the club’s worst since all the way back in 1965:
#OJOALDATO – El Barcelona solo ha sumado 1 punto en sus 4 duelos ligueros contra Real Madrid y Atlético de Madrid en La Liga 2020-21. Es su balance más pobre en una misma temporada ante ambos equipos desde la campaña… 1964-65!!! (en la que perdió sus 4 partidos contra ATM-RMA). pic.twitter.com/eGKFqzmakp
— MisterChip (Alexis) (@2010MisterChip) May 8, 2021
Koeman under pressure
In turn, with Barcelona’s Champions League campaign having also come to a somewhat embarrassing end at the hands of PSG, it should not come as a major surprise to hear that Ronald Koeman’s future has emerged as a topic of serious conversation at the Camp Nou over the last 48 hours.
As per a report from reliable pair Samuel Marsden and Moises Llorens, there are ‘growing doubts’ amongst the Blaugrana hierarchy regarding their manager’s position at the club beyond the summer.
Koeman’s backers point towards the difficulty of the job taken on by the Dutchman, with his focus on youth – the likes of Pedri, Oscar Mingueza and Ronald Araujo have all featured regularly this season – also commendable.
However, significantly, it is added that:
‘Sources have told ESPN how several directors feel Koeman’s style of play doesn’t fit with the club’s long-term goals and would dispense of him even if Barca end the season winning a domestic double.’
— Samuel Marsden (@samuelmarsden) May 10, 2021