Straight off of the bat, let’s firstly acknowledge that no one at this stage knows whether Ernesto Valverde’s time at Barcelona is coming to an end or not.
Rumour and counter-rumour persist, with a whole host of names being thrown into the ring, but the current status quo remains.
At the time of writing, Roberto Martinez is getting an awful lot of traction and appears to be the front runner for a job which still isn’t vacant.
NEXT BARCELONA MANAGER— ThePuntersPage.com (@ThePuntersPage) May 28, 2019
Roberto Martinez 4/6
Quique Setien 6/1
Massimiliano Allegri 6/1
Ronald Koeman 6/1
Xavi Hernandez 12/1
Erik Ten Hag 12/1
Mauricio Pochettino 16/1
Joachim Low 16/1
Luis Enrique 20/1
Full market: https://t.co/PM0gOYlLLn pic.twitter.com/USBknDkws5
Money is also being staked on Ronald Koeman and, oddly enough for a manager who has never ventured outside Italy as either player or manager, Max Allegri. Links to Quique Setien and Erik ten Hag have all but gone quiet.
Judging by comments on social media and elsewhere, aside from the last two, none of those mentioned would appear to have enthused the cule fraternity.
It’s clear that almost all supporters no longer believe that Valverde has what it takes, even if Josep Maria Bartomeu thinks the exact opposite, and the decision that the president makes at this juncture could well define the remaining time he has in office.
Should he decide to look for a new man in charge, he could do worse than Mauricio Pochettino.
The current Tottenham Hotspur incumbent has previously said he would ‘never’ manage Barca, because of his loyalties to Espanyol, but I don’t buy that for a minute.
Are you seriously telling me that whether Spurs win or lose the Champions League final, if Daniel Levy doesn’t cough up serious funds to match his ambitions, that he’ll turn down an approach from the Blaugranes without even the courtesy of hearing them out? Of course not.
Particularly as there don’t appear to be too many other suitable high level openings available at present.
Valverde himself played for, and managed, the Periquitos so unless ‘Poch’ really does want to dig his heels in on that particular issue, there’s a lot for him to gain on a personal level by heading to the Camp Nou.
Acknowledged as one of the brightest managers in Europe, in the space of five years the Argentinian has done wonders with the north Londoners.
Not only is their style of football almost universally admired again, but his focus on bringing through young English players from the academy has been rightly lauded.
At a time when the Blaugranes are finding it harder than ever to promote from within and really lean on the talent at La Masia, having a coach who really has a deep understanding of the benefits of youth and the skill set to bring his ideas to fruition must count for something.
It wouldn’t be an easy hire by any means, but we are Barcelona and it’s right that we want, nay demand, the best in all facets of the club.
If it’s considered that Valverde - who I still fully support for the record - isn’t the right man to take the team forward, then I don’t see anyone better qualified than Pochettino.
I’d like to think he wouldn’t be out of bounds to both the club or fan base either.