The Catalan press are united in their belief that the Barcelona manager has lost the dressing room but will be given a chance in the Champions League.
Quique Setién’s short and turbulent reign as Barcelona manager appears to be coming to an end after Barcelona surrendered their Liga defence to Real Madrid and both Luis Suárez and Leo Messi spoke out about the Camp Nou side’s shortcomings this season.
The Catalan press are united in their belief that Setién is on his way out of Barcelona just six months after replacing Ernesto Valverde. The former coach faced criticism for the side’s style of play but he did deliver titles. Setién’s Barça have gone backwards despite the former boss being brought in due to his tactical reputation and adherence to the Johan Cruyff blueprint for how the team should perform. The 2-1 home defeat against Osasuna provided the last straw for many, including Messi.
Champions League last chance for Setién redemption
Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu has held several meetings with Setién and it seems increasingly unlikely that he will be in charge when the 2020-21 season kicks off. He will, it seems, be handed the chance for redemption in the Champions League but that is largely because of the difficulty in finding a replacement at such short notice. If Setién delivers a first European triumph in five years the panorama may change and he will be on the bench when Barcelona play Napoli in the second leg of their Champions League last 16 tie, which is poised at 1-1.
However, Barcelona have been drawn in the tougher section of the knock-out stages and could face Bayern Munich in the quarter-finals with the prospect of either Manchester City, Juventus, Real Madrid or Lyon in the semis.
Should Setién guide Barça past that daunting prospect all may be forgiven but as it stands the former Betis boss’ time at Camp Nou appears to nearing the 11th hour.
As one Catalan daily put it simply on Saturday’s front page: “No league and no football.”