Barcelona have finally broken a long-term tradition which they have held in more than ten years by sacking their manager despite Xavi’s rejection of the managerial role.
Xavi was initially contacted during the weekend by Barca Sports Director Eric Abidal to take charge at Camp Nou with hopes that Ernesto Valverde would be sacked.
But Xavi rejected that offer, telling Barca he would not be available till June. Slight indications suggested that Valverde would stay till end of season, but he was eventually sacked with Quique Setein announced as interim manager.
In the past ten years, Barca have not sacked any coach and have allowed all managers finish their contract, a practice which makes them quite different from several top clubs who could sack on shot notice.
Since Pep Guardiola took over from Frank Rijkaard in June 2008, no manager has been sacked. But the sack of Ernesto Valverde was late and long overdue. It is strongly believed that this was for the sake of maintaining this long tradition.