In a surprising turn of events on Monday, Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu has decided to terminate the contract of Director of Football Andoni Zubizarreta, who is out of the club effective immediately. Bartomeu has scheduled a press conference for this Wednesday to address the matter.
Here's the announcement from Barça's website:
The FC Barcelona President Josep Maria Bartomeu has decided to terminate as of today the contract of the Club's Director of Football, Andoni Zubizarreta.
The President, in the name of the Club, thanks Andoni Zubizarreta for his contribution, dedication and professionalism over the last four years in his role at the head of the Club's football area.
FC Barcelona goalkeeper between 1986 and 1994, the man from Vitoria in the Basque Country returned to the Club in July 2010 to take up the role of Director of Football.
Zubi, who has held this job since 2010, was one of the best GKs in Barça history, but his success as a director was not even close to what he enjoyed as a player. He was appointed by former president Sandro Rosell to take over for Txiki Begiristain, a former teammate.
Barcelona are currently banned by FIFA from making any new signings for the next two windows. Whoever Barcelona appoint next will not be able to reshape team for a while.
Zubi's transfer policy has not been popular, and his talent evaluation skills were subpar. Most notably, he spent €35m on Jeremy Mathieu, who is 30, and Thomas Vermaelen, who is unlikely to play this season. This past window, he did get a few right: Claudio Bravo's signing seemed inspired, while the jury's still out on Ivan Rakitic. Luis Suarez has shown some spark, but he's yet to justify the huge risk, not to mention financial cost, of the Uruguayan.
Zubi said Vermaelen was a player who would provide "immediate impact." The Belgian defender has not played a second for Barcelona and is currently recovering from surgery. Another signing, Douglas, has struggled to adapt to Spanish football after arriving from the Brazilian league. Some have questioned whether he was or ever will be Barca quality.
We wish Zubi the best of luck in his future endeavors.
Hell, who are we kidding. NA NA NA NA, NA NA NA NA, HE-HE-HEEEEEY, GOODBYE ZUBI!!!!
- Lionel Messsi misses open practice due to illness... And that's not the entire story
- FC Barcelona News: 5 January 2015; Barça Lose to Real Sociedad (Again), Lionel Messi Misses Training
- Full Match Highlights: Real Sociedad 1-0 FC Barcelona
- Breaking Barça: Luis Enrique & FCB Board Destroying Barcelona
- La Liga: Real Sociedad 1-0 FC Barcelona: Match Review