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Quique Setién survives the sack - for now

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A meeting with the club president ended with the coach still at the helm

Villarreal CF v FC Barcelona - La Liga Photo by Jose Miguel Fernandez/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Quique Setién remains as Barcelona manager - for now. A meeting with club president Josep Maria Bartomeu ended with the coach still at the helm, although reports always said it was likely he would last until at least Monday.

While no one said Setién would be fired for sure, there was a strong hint that the next match (this Sunday) would be his last at the reigns. That could still happen, although the signs now are perhaps more encouraging for the Cantabrian.

Outlets in Barcelona say that players will have five or six days off before they start preparing for Napoli in the UEFA Champions League on the 8th of August, a time that could be used to gather strength and perhaps lower tensions between coaches and players.

“Barça have no intention of deposing Setién,” Diario SPORT says.

“There are no news that make one think the Cantabrian will not be the coach against Napoli,” Mundo Deportivo says.

Setién felt “hurt” by Lionel Messi’s post-match words, SPORT says, which could be interpreted as a criticism of the coach’s work. MD echos that sentiment, noting Messi specifically spoke of the poor performance from January onward, which coincides with Setién’s appointment.

On the other hand, Setién reportedly feels confident he can turn around the situation.

The main challenge reportedly is changing the team’s emotional state.

Setién wants to make a “pact” with the dressing room to work together as a unit to compete in the Champions League. Reports say he understood Messi was angry in the heat of the moment, but hopes he and other players are ready to get to work and try to get past Napoli.