90min
FC Barcelona

Barcelona preparing to pull the trigger and sack Ronald Koeman

Graeme Bailey
Ronald Koeman on his way out of the Camp Nou
Ronald Koeman on his way out of the Camp Nou / Eric Alonso/Getty Images
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Barcelona are 'working on' bringing Ronald Koeman's tenure as manager to an end, 90min understands.

Last week president Joan Laporta and the club's directors gave Koeman the dreaded 'vote of confidence' and tasked him with picking up maximum points from their three La Liga fixtures against Granada, Cadiz and Levante.

But draws with Granada and Cadiz have left many of the club's hierarchy viewing Koeman's position as untenable, and Laporta is among those who feel he is not up to the job.

Sources have confirmed to 90min that the club are now 'working on' Koeman's departure from Camp Nou, and that he will not be in charge in October as they are already planning for life after him.

It remains to be seen what Barça will do in terms of his successor, and whether they will be able to bring in a permanent replacement or if they opt to make an interim appointment. It is believed that Jordi Cruyff - currently an advisor to Laporta and the board - is helping piece together the club's next steps, but he is not keen on being part of the management set-up, even on a temporary basis.

Legendary former player Xavi - currently coaching Al Sadd in Qatar - is the preferred candidate of many members of the board, but his appointment is not straightforward as he wants to make sure his return to Barcelona is on his terms.

Laporta has previously been unsure of Xavi due to his affiliation with rival presidential candidate Victor Font, but is believed to now agree with his fellow board members that he is one of the best available options.

Roberto Martinez, currently in charge of Belgium, Leicester's Brendan Rodgers and also River Plate's Marcelo Gallardo are also admired by Laporta.

As for Koeman, he took charge at Barcelona in 2020 - stepping down from his role as Netherlands coach and turning his back on leading them to the European Championship to do so. But his fairytale Camp Nou return - following a successful six-year stint as a player between 1989 and 1995 - has been beset with issues both on and off the field, culminating in the departure of club legend Lionel Messi earlier this summer.

Ronald Koeman
Ronald Koeman has been under fire for a number of weeks / Eric Alonso/Getty Images

The 58-year-old has stood firm in the face of adversity - particularly in recent weeks amid heavy speculation that he will be dismissed - but his inability to turnaround the fortunes of Barça will see him relieved of his duties.

Koeman is likely to still be manager for the game against Levante, albeit not from the sidelines after he was sent off against Cadiz.

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