Barcelona’s defeat to Atletico Madrid in the Spanish Super Cup semi-final on Thursday has again set the stage for Ernesto Valverde’s future. However, President Josep Maria Bartomeu has decided to support it for several reasons.
The fact that his team misused the advantage they had until the last ten minutes of the match gave back to Barcelona fans the memories of shocking defeats against Rome and Liverpool.
As soon as the match ended, RAC1 reported that the decision to dismiss Valverden could be made at the next meeting of the Barcelona governing board on Monday.
However, this will not happen. The president of the Catalan club, Josep Maria Bartomeu, is on Valverde’s side and will not allow his departure, at least not now.
The Spanish daily Marca writes that there are several different reasons why Bartomeu made this decision about Valverde’s future.
One of them is that Barcelona were playing impressive until the last 15 minutes of the match. But they missed opportunities that might have given them the victory.
Another reason is that Valverde still has the support of the players.
“He’s not the culprit for what happened,” Luis Suarez told Valverden shortly after the match.
It was precisely the support from the big players of the team that Valverde retained after the defeat against Liverpool in the Champions League and against Valencia in the King’s Cup last season, as Bartomeu was ready to leave him.
If Barcelona were to dismiss Valverde from the post of coach now, the governing board would not have many options to assess that they would be able to take the post immediately halfway through the season.
But if they wait until the end of the season, Barcelona leaders will have the opportunity to negotiate with coaches such as Ronald Koeman and Roberto Martinez.
Although the team is not performing at its best level, Barcelona are still at the top of La Liga and they consider it would not be fair to dismiss a coach in this position.
As the presidential election in Barcelona is to be held in 2021, Bartomeu knows that whatever decision he makes will be sharply criticized by his opponents.
So, Valverde will remain at the top of the Catalans. His future in the post is becoming increasingly fragile, but he still has plenty of merit in the club.