Well at least Ernesto Valverde has finally been put out of his misery. It seems there’s been speculation about his job for most of this season, but eventually the club decided to sack him and find a replacement.
Numerous sources including BBC confirmed the news and also stated that Barcelona have appointed Quique Setien to replace him, with the new man getting a two and a half year deal.
That does seem like a surprise when you consider the situation with drastically getting rid of Valverde and getting Setien in. He did a great job with Real Betis but there was no real suggestion that Barcelona have been eyeing him for a while.
More details have emerged and it looks like he might not have that much long term security. The club has been smart in case he does well, but there are break clauses in the contract:
— moisESPN (@moillorens) January 13, 2020
Essentially it looks like the club has the option to get rid of him at the end of each season, including this one, so this starts to look more like a short term interim appointment.
That would allow Barcelona to go for a big name in the Summer, but they can also keep their man if he performs better than expected and looks like the man to guide them for the next couple of years.