Lionel Messi will stay the lynchpin of Barcelona beneath Ronald Koeman subsequent season, the membership’s president Josep Maria Bartomeu has mentioned.
Hypothesis has been rife about the way forward for the Blaugrana celebrity, with reviews suggesting he desires to go away the membership following the 8-2 Champions League humiliation by the hands of Bayern Munich final week.
“I’ve spoken with Koeman and the pillar of our mission is Messi,” Bartomeu mentioned. “He has a contract till 2021, I converse lots with Leo and extra usually together with his father.
“He’s primary on the planet. There isn’t a doubt that in Koeman’s new mission you possibly can rely on Messi.”
Messi has been synonymous with Barca for greater than a decade, scoring 631 objectives in 734 appearances since breaking into the primary crew in 2005, serving to the membership win 4 Champions League crowns, 10 LaLiga titles and lots of different trophies apart from.
Quique Setien, solely in cost since January, was sacked on Monday, and a day later sporting director Eric Abidal left the membership too, although Bartomeu indicated the previous defender had jumped fairly than been pushed, saying it was his ‘private resolution’.
Bartomeu has himself come beneath intense scrutiny, however fairly than resign or face a right away election he has chosen to convey ahead the membership’s subsequent poll to March subsequent 12 months.
By then, he’ll hope Koeman has completed a lot to ease the acute stress on the membership’s board.
“We guess on him,” Bartomeu mentioned. “He has been in (Johan) Cruyff’s ‘Dream Workforce’. He was the primary one we known as in January. It’s a dream for him.”
Koeman performed for the membership between 1989 and 1995, profitable the European Cup, 4 LaLiga titles and the Copa del Rey.
Although contracted with the Dutch nationwide crew till after the 2022 World Cup, Koeman earlier on Tuesday confirmed his curiosity within the Barca job because the 57-year-old mentioned “I’d wish to, however it is going to solely be confirmed as soon as I’ve signed the contract.”
The deal is just not but completed, with Bartomeu saying solely that Koeman could be the coach “if nothing goes fallacious”, although with all events in settlement that seems a foregone conclusion now.
The questions will as an alternative be about what different adjustments lie in retailer, with Bartomeu indicating a full squad overhaul was on the playing cards.
“The renewal shall be as deep as needed,” he mentioned. “It was I who determined to present this era the chance for one more 12 months. Possibly it was time to begin the renovation final 12 months.”
Bartomeu is prepared to take the blame for the place Barca discover themselves in even when he has no intention of strolling, saying: “We’re all accountable, however I’m probably the most accountable.”
“The simplest factor could be to resign however I’m not doing it due to my duty to the membership,” he added.
“We have now a sports activities disaster, it isn’t an institutional disaster. It’s not a membership disaster. It’s only a sports activities disaster, which we should repair.”