Barcelona Sacks Manager Ernesto Valverde, Hires Quique Setien

Quique Setien of Betis in February 2019. Photo by Shutterstock (10124139cc)

After two and a half seasons at the helm of FC Barcelona, former head coach Ernesto Valverde has been dismissed as the top man for the Cules.

Replacing him will be long-time Spanish manager Quique Setien.

Valverde took over Barcelona after Luis Enrique’s resignation following the 2016-17 season and had a tenure that was mixed with domination and disappointment with the Catalan club.

Valverde’s teams won both the 2017-18 and 2018-19 La Liga titles, winning in runaway fashion both seasons. In addition, Barcelona won the 2018 edition of the Copa del Rey and reached the final of last year’s competition before falling in the final to Valencia.

However, disappointing exits at the hands of Roma and Liverpool in the knockout stages of the Champions League frustrated fans that couldn’t figure out why his team couldn’t do more. Barcelona’s slow start to 2019-20, which finds them tied with Real Madrid at the top of La Liga, ended up condemning him.

Setien, the former manager of Las Palmas and Real Betis, will take over as Barcelona’s head coach immediately. While he has no past relationship with the Catalonian giants, he is a disciple of wildly popular former Barcelona coach Johan Cryuff.

Setien has signed a contract through 2022, and will make his debut on the Barça bench against Granada on Sunday.