Well, that was terrible, wasn't it?
FC Barcelona loses their second straight game in less than a week as El Blaugrana were defeated by Granada 1-0 on Saturday.
Some would say that Barcelona did not deserve to lose the game; to have at least have tied the game. But let's not talk about "if's" and "should have's". This Barça team didn't have the creativity to win this game. Some players played well, while others didn't add much to the game.
If there was any doubt about the "Fin De Ciclo" not being here, please believe now-it's here. Time to accept realities.
I didn't expect nor want to write another "Fin De Ciclo" article. Then again, I didn't expect Barcelona to not be able to score a goal in two straight games, and let the Champions League and La Liga slip away in a four-day span.
Yet, here we are.
Tick-tock, time running out on Tata's FCB managerial clock
As I have mentioned in previous "Fin De Ciclo" articles, I think Tata Martino seems like a nice guy, but he is not a disciplinarian and for the betterment of FC Barcelona he cannot stay on as manager for next season.
These Barça players need to be toughened up and disciplined, and need a new manager to do just that.
Tata Martino will take much of the blame for FCB's bad run. He is incapable of knowing what changes are needed to turn a game around, and this job is too big for him. He is at fault for many of this squad's mistakes including lack of motivation, discipline, and creativity. Frankly, I get the feeling that some of the Barcelona players don't take Tata Martino seriously.
Sorry, Tata. This is business, not personal.
FC Barcelona have more than just squad mistakes, FC Barcelona has club mistakes.
Due to this Barcelona board's incompetence, we are now seeing the end of this Barça era a bit too early. Now, this team is completely lost, and a major change will be needed this summer. All Culés and even the FCB board will be praying that the transfer ban will be suspended, or else next season will be another long season-especially on the defensive side of things.
Goal.com's Ben Hayward made a good point when he tweeted:
"Tata will get blamed if Barça lose, but what of Zubizarreta? Three years without buying a defender. Result: Song and Mascherano at the back."
Excellent point: What of sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta?! A major part of the falling out of this FCB era is his fault. He has been and is an inept sporting director who has not signed a centre-back in three years. If Zubizarreta had any dignity, he would put in his resignation now. But of course, he won't because he and the rest of the FCB board "will spend 100 million euros on players this summer." Give me a break! Keep praying that the transfer ban is suspended. And even if it is, I have a terrible feeling Zubi would somehow find a way to mess up and sign a player that makes no sense being signed-see Alex Song.
La Liga is essentially done for Barcelona, and quite frankly, they don't really deserve to win it. Even if somehow Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid slip up and allow Barça to win the Liga, I will still say that Barcelona did not deserve it. Atleti has been consistent all Liga long, and deserve the title the most. Even Madrid is more deserving, as they have been better than FCB at killing off an opponent once they get the lead-especially at home.
As I mentioned a few weeks ago in a previous article, this 2013-14 FC Barcelona season reminds me a bit of the 2007-08 season. Like in 07-08, Barcelona will probably finish third in La Liga, lacked the urgency just like in Frank Rijkaard's final season, lacked discipline, and will mark the end of an era for the club.
There is nothing wrong with change. And for this club, change is desperately needed. Please quit being in denial and stop saying everything is OK. This FCB team used to be great. Now, it's only good-sometimes, they don't even look "good." Perhaps we are all spoiled, but hey, we can't help it. Don't fear change, Culés.
The Barcelona board has got to go. Personally, I will never trust Josep Maria Bartomeu, Andoni Zubizarreta and the rest of the board with my beloved team's future. They have ruined the latter part of this 2008-2014 era for Barcelona, and I hope the FCB socios demand new elections this summer. True change is not going to happen if Bartomeu, Zubi, and the rest of these people are still in charge. I'd rather have Joan Laporta back at FCB because at least with him, I and every other Culé would know with certainty that Laporta would sign the players and the manager needed to start a new era-see Frank Rijkaard (2003-08 era) and Pep Guardiola in 2008.
Wanted: A new manager
True change is needed, and it begins with a new manager next season. And not just any manager: a disciplined, motivating, get-in-your-face manager.
Borussia Dortmund manager Jürgen Klopp is at the top of the list. Klopp brings everything Barcelona needs in a manager: discipline, creativity, and motivation. He's not afraid to get in a player's face and the German would bring true change to the club's toughness-or lack thereof. We've seen Klopp's success in the Bundesliga with his tactics and style. Jürgen is a smart man, and would not force players like Lionel Messi or Neymar to play a style that doesn't support their strengths.
Another candidate include Everton manager and Roberto Martinez. The Catalan has done a great job in England with Everton this season as well as last season with Wigan Athletic.
The tiki-taka will always be an element of FC Barcelona and the squad, but it's time to bring new ideas to this club and squad. New players will be needed, but we'll wait until the transfer ban decision goes before we talk about who may join the new era of FC Barcelona in 2014-15. If the ban is suspended, a new and exciting era will begin with new players. You must stay positive, and welcome a new era.
Xoel's Final Word
La Liga seems all but lost as FC Barcelona lost 1-0 against Granada on Saturday night. I still love Futbol Club Barcelona, and I know better days will come back for El Blaugrana.
The road ends in Valencia and the Copa final for this FCB era (‘08-‘14)
The Copa del Rey final will be the finale for this FC Barcelona era as we know it. It may be the last trophy that this era wins. I hope we see a Barça win over Madrid to symbolize the last great win and title of an era that brought us much joy over six season.
Vamos Barça! A por la Copa!
O le le,
O la la,
Ser del Barça es,
el millor que hi ha!
Xoel, The Voice of els Culés