La Liga: Ronald Koeman’s HUGE task as he prepares to take over at Barcelona

Ronald Koeman’s HUGE task as he prepares to take over at Barcelona

Ronald Koeman’s HUGE task as he prepares to take over at Barcelona

Ronald Koeman faces a mounting task as he prepares to take over at Barcelona.

Reports in Spain indicate that six-time Ballon D’or winner Lionel Messi is not a happy man.

The diminutive figure suffered his biggest defeat ever last week at the hands of a mauling German side. This came weeks after he saw his side relinquish the league title to arch-rivals Real Madrid.

At a post-match interview, the skipper called for changes at the team. The Nou Camp side were leading the table before the hiatus caused by the pandemic.

Soon after the restart, result after result, the title ebbed away from them. The grand of them all was the 8-2 humiliation by Bayern Munich.

Soon after, Quique Setien was shown the door. Many will say it was deservedly so. Brought in mid-season with the team still at the summit, the 61-year old was never able to steady the team that had dismal results on the road.

With Koeman’s unveiling at the side, Khusoko Sports takes a look at what awaits the former Everton and Southampton manager.

Ronald Koeman’s HUGE task as he prepares to take over at Barcelona
Ronald Koeman is expected to steer Barcelona through an on and off-pitch as he takes charge

Signings

A statement by the club on Monday was that there will be no signings until some players leave.

Such a bold message for a club that is a mere shadow of its heydays. Getting rid of Quique Setien was ‘only the first step in a major restructuring of the first team’.

Koeman will want to have some control over who stays and who goes but players on contracts can be hard to shift. Wanting them out can also lead to ill-feeling in the dressing room.

Luis Suarez, Sergio Busquets and Jordi Alba have been mentioned as probable names that would see the exit door.

Talks of a sensational return of Neymar have been floated, but the price for the Brazilian may inhibit this.

Club restructuring

Barcelona boasted on Xavi and Iniesta. Two midfielders that redefined what midfielders need to do in a team.

With talks of an exit for Sergio Busquets, Koeman will have to decide how he makes the midfield rebuild again.

The arrival of Miralem Pjanic from Juventus in the summer sounds interesting. Then there is Dutch international Frenkie de Jong whose debut season has been underwhelming.

Defensive frailties

Gerard Pique is aging and his reading of the game as well as decision-making faded. Having been the club’s anchor for many years, Koeman will have to know how to rebuild a department that continues to leak in goals.

Marc Ter Stegen was enjoying a season to remember before the hiatus. Making incredible saves match after match. The restart of the season, however, has not been so well for the German who was at fault for several goals in the slugfest in Lisbon.

Messi Factor

What plans does Koeman have for getting the best out of the Barca number 10? If Messi does not like what he hears then his desire to leave will intensify.

Bartomeu added on Tuesday: ‘Koeman will be the new manager and he told me that Messi is a key player for our new project.

‘He has a contract until 2021, I speak a lot with Leo and more regularly with his father.

‘He is number one in the world. There is no doubt that in Koeman’s new project you can count on Messi.’

Nou Camp and the football world awaits.