To take the responsibility of managing a club who fearlessly dominated world football for over five years, one needs to have courage, mental ability and will power.
Tito Vilanova - the former FC Barcelona midfielder had everything that takes to be a great manager when he took over the crown from Pep Guardiola who completely revolutionized the Barcelona style of game by perfectly developing Johan Cruyff's agenda of 'Total Football'.
Tito's season at Barcelona started off with flying colours when he managed to lead Barcelona to the best ever La Liga start in its history. Having lost to just two teams after 34 games, Tito has definitely shown that he can manage a world-class team straight away.
Considering the new manager’s lack of experience at professional level, it is fair to say that Barcelona supporters must be pleased with the team’s achievements so far.
The Blaugrana are only two points short of clinching the league title with four matches remaining, but they have faced wide criticism from various sections of the media for their perceived defensive frailties and elimination from the Champions League at the hands of Bayern Munich.
However, the Barca boss is the first to admit that he may have made mistakes during his first term in charge of the Catalans since succeeding Pep Guardiola last year and has vowed to do things differently in the forthcoming campaign.
”One must improve and be self-critical. It's been a tough year for injuries. The coach has not been around for over two months and it's not been easy. Next year, we'll do things differently, but it is normal because it is only my first year.” Vilanova told the reporters recently.
Under Tito, Barcelona has adapted a more direct approach. The team has been winning because of insistence and desire, rather than brilliance or beautiful football. Vilanova has been forced to use numerous back-line combinations because of the continuous injuries.
Continuous changes throughout the season have caused the team to lose team chemistry, which is a very vital point inside any team. That’s where we should applaud Tito’s work for being able to push the team forward with such a fragile defence.
We can see that a small portion of supporters are not happy to have Tito as a manager who finds excuses like his physical weakness to be used against him.
One of the big names who believe that Tito has failed as Barcelona manager includes former Barcelona president Joan Laporta. He believes that the Camp Nou side made the wrong decision to appoint Tito Vilanova as their head coach at the start of the 2012-13 campaign.
Laporta also went on to voice his opinion that Barca should have hired a replacement for Vilanova during his absence due to cancer treatment.
The truth is that it is mostly down to the players, not the managers, to win matches. A squad that boasts three Ballon d’Or finalists and a huge number of international players is more likely to succeed than others of inferior quality.
A world-class coach’s duty is to develop players to convert them into successful stars.
To decide Tito’s future and ability to manage the Catalan side after just one season would be suicidal. Having grown up from La Masia, there is no other coach at the moment who will understand what is good for Barcelona. What he really needs now is time and patience. With the support from the Cules and players, he sure will get to the good old days.
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