FC Barcelona: Koeman sacking and Cortés resignation show club's ruthless nature

Barcelona managers

Ronald Koeman’s sacking could be seen a mile away.

Barcelona have made their worst ever start to a Champions League campaign and sit ninth in LaLiga, with just four wins from 10 league games.

For a side that is so accustomed to winning silverware and has been one of Europe’s best teams for the majority of this millennium, it is no surprise to see the Dutchman sacked.

No matter how good a player Koeman was for the club, he was never going to be afforded the same luxury as the likes of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has been at Man United.

While Koeman’s sacking came as a surprise to nobody, Barcelona’s ruthlessness when it comes to managers is frightening.



Lose and you definitely lose your job. Win trophies and there’s still some chance you might be ousted as well.

Because to stay manager of the Catalonian giants, the individual must not just win matches. Indeed, that individual must aim to replicate the style of football pioneered by Pep Guardiola. That individual must also keep the squad happy. And above all –– that individual must conform to whatever the board tell you to do.

This is where Koeman ultimately failed and why there was never a way he could take this Barcelona team any further.

Barcelona’s women’s team is even more brutal. Lluís Cortés guided the Spanish side to their first Women’s Champions League title last season and a record-breaking points total in the league.

Lluis Cortes

He was lauded by fans and the media for implementing the aforementioned ‘Barca style’ of play and had successfully dethroned Lyon as the dominant force in women’s football.

What he failed to do, however, was keep the players happy. SPORT reported back in June that members of the squad were calling for his exit amidst unrest in the dressing room.

Full details were never disclosed but at the end of June, Cortes resigned from his role as head coach.

Jonatan Giráldez replaced Cortes and has continued the success that Cortes helped build. In truth, there was nothing much for him to change.

The side has scored 43 goals in seven league games and are unbeaten in Europe so far as well.

For now, things are going to plan. But the problem Giráldez now faces is proving that he is the right person for the job long-term. Winning the treble used to be an ambitious target –– now it is a minimum requirement.

Ronald Koeman

What’s become apparent is that even the club’s best managers, for both the men’s and women’s sides, have not had particularly long tenures.

The quote: “You either die a hero or live long enough to see yourself become a villain,” certainly reigns true in Barcelona’s case, and few managers have been fortunate enough to leave on good terms.

Guardiola is considered the best manager in the club’s recent memory, but even he faced problems during his time in charge. Despite winning two Champions League titles, the Spaniard was only offered a rolling contract that was renewed annually.

Added to this, Guardiola cited burnout during his final season at the club and said four years in charge felt “like an eternity.”

While the 50-year-old won 14 trophies in his four years as manager, there were nonetheless criticisms of his team selections and tactics by the end of his reign.

Yet, with the club in financial crisis and a lack of managers queuing up to compete for one of the toughest jobs in world football –– how Barcelona wish they could have him back.

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