Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu has delivered a Christmas message, apparently, where he’s admitted the club have made some unpopular decisions.
Bartomeu confessed it had been a difficult year, what with Luis Enrique leaving and the search for a new manager as well as the shock departure of Neymar.
The club also made a bit of a mess of Lionel Messi’s contract renewal, although fortunately Barto did manage to get his photo with the Barca legend in the end.
"It has been an intense year both from a sporting and a social point of view," he said.
"We know that we have made some decisions that have not been liked, but despite all of these difficulties, the board has always tried to do things with sense and calmness.
"There have been problems, such as the exit of Luis Enrique, the arrival of Valverde, the sale of Neymar, the contract renewals of some key players, and the issue [that is still ongoing] regarding Catalan independence.
"[Nevertheless,] Barcelona continue to grow as a brand, as a family and as a club.
"We are aware that we are currently living in a state of crisis. Hopefully we will have a better 2018 than we did in 2017."
Source | Marca
The spotlight will be on Bartomeu and Co. when the transfer window opens with the club having been heavily linked with a number of players.
Javier Mascherano is also widely expected to depart, therefore a replacement will be needed, and whoever comes in will play a part in determining how successful this season will be.