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Barcelona: Koeman open to replacing Valverde at Camp Nou

The Netherlands boss, who spent six seasons at Camp Nou, spoke about the possibility of taking charge of Barcelona at some stage in his career.

Soccer Football - Euro 2020 Qualifier - Group C - Netherlands v Northern Ireland - Feyenoord Stadium, Rotterdam, Netherlands - October 10, 2019  Netherlands coach Ronald Koeman gestures   Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Boyers
ANDREW BOYERSAction Images via Reuters

Ronald Koeman has responded to rumours linking him with a return to Barcelona as coach to replace Ernesto Valverde, in the case that the incumbent does not last beyond the end of the current season.

The current Netherlands manager, who took his side to the final of the inaugural Nations League last summer, was an assistant at Barça between 1998 and 2000 and has experience in the Eredivisie, Premier League and LaLiga, although while his spell at Valencia delivered a Copa del Rey, he was sacked with the club hovering above the relegation places.

Koeman will only leave Oranje for Camp Nou

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Koeman confirmed that he has a clause in his contract with the Oranje that would allow him to leave for Barcelona but added that he was not lending the matter much thought at the moment: “It’s a possibility that I could sign for Barça but I won’t think about anything until after the European Championship,” the 56-year-old said ahead of the game against Northern Ireland.

The clause Koeman referred to does not become active until after the Euros and the Dutch boss said “there is no other side I would the Netherlands for except Barcelona.”

River Plate manager Marcelo Gallardo has also been linked with the position while Barça president Josep Maria Bartomeu backed Valverde last week to continue at the helm of the club. Despite some criticism of his side’s sluggish start to the season, Barça are top of LaLiga and lead their group in the Champions League ahead of Borussia Dortmund and Inter Milan.


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