Koeman spoke at his introductory press conference with the club, which was recently introduced as Quique Setien’s successor.
Koeman wants to sit and speak with Leo Messi
Newly appointed Barcelona head coach Ronald Koeman says he plans to sit down and speak with Lionel Messi while working alongside the Argentine star for years to come. Koeman spoke at his introductory press conference with the club, which was recently introduced as Quique Setien’s successor. Setien was retired on the heels of a losing season when Barça lost to rivals Real Madrid in LaLiga before being trounced by Bayern Munich in an 8-2 beatdown to complete their Champions League run. Koeman joins Barça when he leaves his role in the Netherlands national team, and he finds his old club in a state of confusion. Technical director Eric Abidal has followed Setien out of the club, and Barça president Josep Maria Bartomeu faces an election in March.
Several Barcelona players are available for transfer
The president has already stated that several of Barça’s stars are available for transfer, with the club only committing to holding individuals they consider important players. One player that Barca are eager to hold on to is Leo Messi. However, recent reports have indicated that the captain is fed up with Barça’s decision making and is considering leaving Camp Nou. Meanwhile, Koeman hopes that Messi will stay with Barcelona for as long as possible, as he looks forward to working alongside the club’s longtime star. “I don’t know if I should convince Messi or not,” Koeman said on Wednesday. “You want the best in the world on your team, not the other way around. I want to work with Messi. He wins you games, and if he provides the performances that he has always shown, I will be pleased if he wants to stay.
“He has a contract. I have to talk to him because he is the team captain. We are going to work and talk with several players. And in the case of Messi, I hope he will be here for many more years.” He added: “What I am talking to Messi is private things between the player and the coach. We will talk about what he thinks about Barcelona, and then I will make decisions. Messi has one more year on his contract and is a Barça player, and I want him to be on my team.” The Argentinian was Barça’s standout yet again throughout the 2019/20 campaign, breaking former teammate Xavi’s hitting record with 21 assists and 25 goals.