Dutch Coach, Ronald Koeman has been chosen as Barcelona’s new manager and will quit Holland this week to take over from Quique Setien.
The former Evertonboss Koeman emerged as the Catalan side’s key target in the wake of the Champions Leaguequarter-final humbling, and the club plan to install him as the new man in the dugout this week after Setien’s departure has been confirmed.
Ex-Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino had also been touted as a possible candidate for the role despite vowing to never take over after managing rivals Espanyol, but now Koeman is set to take the side forward into a new era.
The Dutchman played for Barcelona for six years during a highly successful career that saw him win LaLiga four times, as well as the Copa Del Rey and European Cup.
He featured 350 times for the Spanish giants 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 time 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 Dutch FA that allowed him to move to Barca after Euro 2020.
Even though the competition has been delayed until 2021, Koeman earlier this year told Spanish newspaper Marca that the terms of the deal still stood.
“The clause in my contract to go to Barcelona is for after the European Championship.
“No date has been mentioned, so now it’s after the European Championship in 2021. But I haven’t thought about it for a second anyway.”
One of his first jobs after taking control of his beloved side will be to convince talisman Lionel Messi to commit his future to the club.
The Argentine has become frustrated with the hierarchy during a disappointing campaign and has been linked with moves to Italy and the Premier League.
His rise to one of the top jobs in football marks a spectacular turnaround for Koeman, who was axed as Everton boss in 2017 – leaving the Toffees in the relegation zone after a string of poor results.
But he managed to rebuild himself after being appointed as manager of his national side the following year – lifting an underperforming team who had failed to qualify for Euro 2016 and the 2018 World Cup by securing qualification to Euro 2020.