FC Barcelona’s fortunes took a turn for the better last night in Ukraine.
Thanks to a 70th winner from Ansu Fati, they beat Dynamo Kiev 1-0 in a must-win Champions League clash and are now second in the group with six points from four matches.
This marks a swift reversal of fortunes following the two 3-0 losses to Bayern Munich and Benfica under Ronald Koeman, but now with the
Dutchman no more in the managerial hotseat, his successor must be appointed considering a two-week international break looming following Saturday’s clash with Celta Vigo.
After that, Barca are next in action on November 20 in the derby against Espanyol and want one of their best ever players, Xavi Hernandez, to lead the team from the dugout.
Previously way down the pecking order to other choices such as Andrea Pirlo and Roberto Martinez, when Joan Laporta last wanted to dismiss Koeman but then gave him more time to
prove himself in a string of failed assignments that included being beaten by Real Madrid in El Clasico and Rayo Vallecano away, the 41-year-old has risen to the summit as the Catalans’ top target.
According to local media outlet TV3, the legendary midfielder of the Tiki-Taka era has already reached an agreement with his boyhood outfit that will see him sign up for the rest of the
season and two more terms on top of that where he plans to completely restructure the club from the La Masia academy he graduated through to the approach towards health and nutrition.
On Wednesday, all the leading sports papers attest that a Barca delegation is heading to Qatar to get the deal over the line and negotiate his release from current employers Al Sadd with its sheikh owner.
The team consists of Rafa Yuste and Mateu Alemany, but it is thought that Laporta has put the whole project in jeopardy by not landing in Doha, as the sheikh wants to meet and bargain with him directly and could be offended.
Already overseeing the exit of Lionel Messi, Barcelona fans and members would never forgive him if Xavi also slips through his hands at a crucial point in Blaugrana history when they need him the most.
“Laporta cannot risk failure on this issue.