We love making lists here at BB, but we’ve heard some doubts and questions over whether Ernesto Valverde really is the best choice to replace Luis Enrique.
So without any further ado, let's cut straight to the chase and give you three reasons why Valverde is the right man for Barcelona!
He’s great at promoting youth
I love the idea of having a bunch of academy players in the squad—there is something exciting about having a squad brimming with academy talent that's waiting for a shot to represent the jersey on the biggest stage.
If that's exactly what you're looking for too, then Valverde is your man. The former Athletic manager is known for his extensive utilisation of academy players, including the likes of Ander Herrera, Aymeric Laporte, and Inaki Williams.
Say what you want about Valverde but he sure knows what it takes to make the transition from the academy to the Liga, and Barca is in dire need of someone who can reestablish faith in the prospect of promotion for young players.
Excellent defensive structure
Despite being a team full of stars, Barca has never quite been a team known for their defensive abilities. While the club has always been known for its quality in the attacking third, Barca continue to remain behind most top teams in their defensive game. While some could argue that Barca has benefitted from their aggressive attacking prowess, the need for a sound defensive structure is paramount in a world where being good at just one tactic no longer guarantees trophies.
Gone are the days when teams like Barcelona, Real Madrid and Juventus could get away with exclusively keeping possession, or counter-attacking or playing an unbreakable defence—most teams have developed a hybrid that amalgamates all these unique styles into one working tactic and Barca need to get their defensive structure in order if they wish to keep up with the times and get back to title-winning ways.
Valverde might have his shortcomings but one of his biggest strengths is organising a working defensive ideology that depends on teamwork and determination, making him the need of the hour.
Simplicity is key
There are quite a number of managerial options available on the market which makes Valverde's signing a bit of an anticlimax to most fans. However, if one were to recall, Barca has never really gone after the big names of the managing world—from Lucho to Tata Martino, Guardiola to Tito, all of Barca's last four coaches were hardly known as world-beaters at the time of their appointment but managed to push the club forward either through silverware or through ideologies. Even Tata Martino can be credited with introducing the club to a more direct style that wasn't seen for a long time at the Camp Nou.
While Valverde is not a tactical genius like Pep, he comes with a pragmatic winning mentality that is crucial to success. He might not organise his team as stylistically as Guardiola or Lucho, but he will give us a fresh take on our possession-based attacking style.
Valverde and his simple approach of playing to his team's strengths is exactly what the club needs after Luis Enrique's "Frankenstein-ish"approach to line-ups and tactics—for a change, it will be nice to see some of the players finally playing in their actual roles.
So that's my list of why I think Ernesto Valverde is the ideal coach to lead Barca forward. Got your own list of reasons? Share them in the comments below!