Josep Maria Bartomeu has said Ernesto Valverde’s job was never in danger despite recent reports the club were considering sacking him.
Reports have claimed the board leaked a story to the press on the eve of the Copa del Rey final saying that Valverde could be fired if he did not beat Sevilla.
The club were said to still be furious about their Champions League exit at the hands of Roma but Bartomeu has denied any of this is true when talking to Cadena Ser’s radio show ‘El Larguero’.
“It’s false that Valverde’s position was in any danger. He is in his first year and has just started a project, his project. We are very happy with him and we speak to him regularly.
”We haven’t talked about this at all, it only appeared in the press. It is absolutely false. These types of things often come out. Someone must have said it, but it wasn’t anyone on the board or the club.”
“After what happened last summer [with Neymar leaving] no-one on the board had any doubts about Valverde. We were all disappointed by what happened in Rome, but you have to look at how we reacted to the defeat.
”No-one on the board had any doubts after Rome. No-one. The team’s success in this project is guaranteed. If we win the double, it will have been an excellent season. It’s not perfect, but it’s the club’s eighth double in our history. And it has nothing to do with what Real Madrid might win.”
Bartomeu | Source
It’s no surprise to hear Bartomeu’s denials but leaking that kind of story right before the Copa del Rey final, reflects so poorly on the board.