Martino set for Barca role

Gerardo Martino has emerged as the likely replacement for Tito Vilanova as Barcelona coach.

Last Updated: 23/07/13 at 11:10 Post Comment

Gerardo Martino: Set to be confirmed as the next Barca boss

Gerardo Martino: Set to be confirmed as the next Barca boss

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

According to widespread media reports in Spain on Monday evening, the Argentinian is set to be confirmed as the next Barca boss on a three-year contract following talks.

The 50-year-old led Newell's Old Boys to the Argentinian Clausura title last season but recently severed ties with the club. Barcelona have made no official announcement.

The Spanish champions are searching for a new coach after announcing on Friday night that Vilanova was stepping down from the post as he continues his battle with cancer.

The 44-year-old, who led Barca to the Primera Division title in his only season in charge after replacing Pep Guardiola last summer, had a tumour removed from his throat in late 2011, but suffered a relapse a year after.

He underwent another operation on his parotid gland in December before beginning a course of chemotherapy and radiotherapy in New York.

A host of coaches had been linked to the vacant position, including former Barcelona B boss Luis Enrique, Andre Villas-Boas, Marcelo Bielsa, Michael Laudrup, Rubi and most recently Guus Hiddink, who on Monday resigned as coach of Anzhi Makhachkala.

However, it seems Martino is now poised to take the reigns at the Catalan giants.

Barca captain Carles Puyol was asked about the possible options at a press conference on Monday morning and he stressed the importance of bringing in a coach who believes in the club's "philosophy".

He said: "I think all the names that have been mentioned are capable of coaching this team. We all know that Zubi (sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta) and the board are working hard and we're sure they'll bring us the best coach.

"We have a certain way of playing; a philosophy. The coach that comes in will follow that line and I'm sure that Zubi and the directors are looking for a coach that can adapt to our characteristics.

"I know (Martino) is a very good coach, who likes the style of the club. And you all know that I have a very good relationship with Luis (Enrique) - he's one of the most accomplished names - but I like all the others who have been mentioned."

Puyol, 35, also paid tribute to Vilanova, who inspired Barcelona to a 22nd Primera Division title despite missing a number of matches in the second half of the campaign as he underwent treatment in the United States.

"It's really tough news, not just because it's happened to a coach or a colleague, but because it's an illness," Puyol added.

"The person is the most important thing. We remember how he talked to us, how he asked us to give everything, asked us to fight. We certainly did that and we did it even more because of him."

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

I

really enjoyed this. Thanks F365 for another year of work avoidance - happy Christmas.

megabrow (cufc)
Our Person Of The Year: Alan Pardew

I

m no Sam Fan and this article sums him up beautifully. I always like to imagine that when he watches anything on TV and hears clapping, he stands up and aknowledges the applause, thinking its for him!

cozens
Football Managers On TV: Sam Allardyce

N

ah, Fergie is just having another pop at Rooney. He just wants to put him down whenever he gets a chance. Rooney is by far the best English player. Carrick is not far behind, mind. However, by elevating Carrick like that, Sir is having a dig at Wayne. Fergie is well-known for mind games like that. Good to see he's still feisty.

timbo
Van Gaal will thrive - Ferguson

Footer 365

Premier League: QPR look for result against Arsenal, Rio Ferdinand in selection contention

QPR boss Harry Redknapp says Rio Ferdinand could be back in the team as the squad is rotated through the festive period.

Premier League: Nemanja Matic says Chelsea can win quadruple

Chelsea midfielder Nemanja Matic insists the Blues can win the quadruple this season.

Premier League: Ronald Koeman facing selection crisis ahead of Southampton's match against Everton

Harrison Reed's impressive display against Everton has given Ronald Koeman a selection dilemma.

Mail Box

Van Gaal's Half-Term Report Card...

One Man United fan isn't happy with the rate the team is progressing under Louis van Gaal, while the mailbox also wishes Liverpool fans a Merry Mid-Table Christmas...

Hang On, Rafa's Success Is No Fluke...

The afternoon mailbox kicks the morning mailbox's arse after claims that Rafa Benitez has fluked his success. Plus, big talk about Liverpool's progress and lots more...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property