Barcelona Appoint Valverde To Replace Luis Enrique

Barcelona has officially appointed Ernesto Valverde as its new head manager, confirming reports earlier this week that he would replace Luis Enrique. "He promotes the youth players and he has a Barça way", Bartomeu concluded. He likes to work with the basics, has a playing style just like the one Barcelona FC uses and is an enthusiast of the new technologies and training methods, ' said Bartomeu to reporters Monday.

Valverde has been the front-runner for the Barcelona job for some time, and stepped down as Bilbao boss last week amidst growing speculation.

Luis Enrique left Barcelona this weekend after helping the club win nine titles out of a possible 13 in the three seasons he was with the Catalan club.

So Valverde most definitely has the experience as a manager but not the experience of managing a top European club. From the moment Luis Enrique said he was not going to continue (technical secretary) Robert Fernandez began a search. I don't know him but I've spoken to him on a few occasions.

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18/03/17 Athletic Bilbao coach Ernesto Valverde reacts.

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Lowe also believes Valverde has a big decision to make over the future of Andres Iniesta and whether they need to think of signing a replacement for him.

The feeling is mutual, too, with Herrera reciprocating that admiration for both Valverde and Barcelona and having spent a season under the coach in his final year in Bilbao.

Valverde, 53-years-of-age, has impressed since taking charge of Atletico Bilbao back in 2013, leading the club to four consecutive top-ten finishes, a Copa Del Rey Final and also to the quarter-finals of the Europa League.

Yet Valverde, who has also coached at Valencia and Villarreal over his 15-year managerial career, will be expected to challenge for honors immediately at a demanding Barca.

  • Julie Sanders