Soccer News: Koeman accepts the fate of Barcelona and wonders if the next manager will do a better job

    Ronald Koeman has apparently accepted that his time as Barcelona manager has run out but wondered if his replacement will do a better job with available players.

    Wednesday’s 3-0 defeat to Benfica – consecutive defeats at the start of a Champions League season for the first time in Barça’s history – added to the pressure on Koeman.

    After a streak of five-game wins in all competitions, reports from Spain on Friday suggest that this weekend’s trip to Atletico will be the Dutchman’s last in charge.

    Barça president Joan Laporta is said to have made the decision in the wake of the hefty defeat in Lisbon and a substitute will reportedly be replaced during the national team break.

    While Koeman has yet to discuss his future with Laporta, the former Netherlands boss admits that Spanish and Catalan press reports say so.

    “The club didn’t tell me anything, really,” he said in a press conference on Friday to preview his team’s clash with Atletico.

    “I found out the president was here this morning but I didn’t see him. We were training but I’m still the same.

    “I have ears and eyes and I already know that a lot of things are leaking out. Sure it’s true but to me, once again, he didn’t tell me anything.

    “I’m not the most important thing, but the team. I’m here for the love of the club. I came here during a complicated situation, more complicated than the first day.

    Everyone has their own opinion but I’m only interested in the players and the Atletico match. “

    Luis Enrique and Roberto Martinez, respectively in charge of Spain and Belgium, have excluded themselves from the race to replace Koeman this week.

    Numerous other high-profile names have been linked, but Koeman – who saw Lionel Messi leave for Paris Saint-Germain in August – believes the situation will remain the same.

    “I don’t know if another manager would be able to get more out of this team,” he said. “There are many young people here.

    “There has been talk of the system, but it’s because the players are not available. There are no wings. The coach’s job is to work with the available players.

    If I had a lot of money, I would still have Messi here and other players by his side. If we catch up with strikers, we can have a strong and young squad ”.

    Jordi Cruyff, appointed sports advisor by Barça in June, is another one that is expected to happen to Koeman in the coming days or weeks.

    “I talk to Jordi every day,” Koeman said. “But what we talk about remains between us. From day one he told me that he would not take the position of coach of the club. “

    Koeman has been under pressure since the end of last season and the 58-year-old has had to regularly defend his position.

    “I’m tired of doing it,” he said when asked to highlight the work he has done in his 14 months at the helm.

    “We have done important things in a time of change. One day I will speak and say what I think ”.

    Asked about his best and worst moments on the bench, Koeman said: “It looks like I’m out, but the best was signing for the club, the worst was Messi’s departure.”

    Koeman’s immediate attention is on the match with Atletico, who have beaten Barça only once in their last 11 league matches in the Spanish capital.

    A win for the Catalan giants would move them above the champions in the standings, although Koeman expects another tough test.

    “We are teams with different styles, but both lead to a lot of winning,” he said. “They were deservedly champions last season.

    “It’s difficult to create chances against them. They are very good at defending their area and you have to be very good with the last pass. Only by scoring can you beat them ”.

    Young midfielder Pedri and full-back Jordi Alba were both excluded from the game due to injury.

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