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Barcelona vs. PSG: Luis Enrique Made the Right Call Announcing His Departure, Obviously

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To think this was a debate...

FC Barcelona v Paris Saint-Germain - UEFA Champions League Round of 16: Second Leg Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Luis Enrique announced he was leaving at the end of the season as his FC Barcelona had just completed a routine win, but were in the midst of almost being knocked out of the UEFA Champions League by Paris Saint-Germain.

The feeling was extremely low, with many fans frankly quite happy to see him go. Barcelona had lost 4-0 and were on their way to an early exit, a failure. They weren’t doing all that well in the league, scraping results.

At the time some questioned the timing of his announcement. Was he being selfish, by trying to get a load off his mind, despite how it could destabilize the team?

Were rumors about his successor going to overwhelm them? What about the idea that they would quit on him, rejecting his authority, knowing his reign would soon end?

How things have changed.

Not only have these fears been debunked, they look quite ridiculous now. Barcelona are atop La Liga, albeit with one game more than Real Madrid, and they did the impossible and overturned that 4-0 first leg against PSG.

“Was he being selfish, by trying to get a load off his mind, despite how it could destabilize the team?”

No, he was lifting it from everyone. Forget the doubts and uncertainty. Forget the fans getting antsy and going against him. He’s leaving. It’s OK. Worry about football.

“Were rumors about his successor going to overwhelm them?”

The rumors were there already. It’s just noise now.

“What about the idea that they would quit on him, rejecting his authority, knowing his reign would soon end?”

And ruin the chance of a double... I mean treble now? Not a chance. These are winners looking to win, not a team of middling miscreants. That happens when a team is assured they will get into the CL but not win the title, or sure to stay up but not compete for Europe. The motivation to do especially well is diminished. This isn’t the case for a team in Barcelona’s position.

Now it looks like the only drawback of Luis Enrique’s announcement was that now he pretty much has to go.

There’s some irony for you.