Barcelona appoint Flick as new head coach

Hansi Flick has been appointed the new Barcelona head coach.

The former Bayern Munich and Germany boss has signed a two-year deal at the Nou Camp.

Flick replaces Xavi, who was sacked a month after Barcelona had persuaded him to stay on as manager, after he initially planned to leave at the end of this campaign. The 44-year-old took the Catalans to the Champions League quarter-finals where they lost to Paris Saint-Germain.

“FC Barcelona and Hansi Flick have reached an agreement for the German to become men’s first-team football coach until 30 June 2026,” a club statement read.

Flick was dismissed by Germany in September following a 4-1 friendly defeat to Japan on the back of a group-stage exit at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

He served as assistant coach to Joachim Low when his country won the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, before clinching back-to-back Bundesliga titles and the 2020 Champions League during a two-season stay with Bayern.

The 59-year-old succeeds a predecessor who was appointed in November 2021 to manage the club where he won 25 major trophies as a player.

Xavi steered the team from ninth place in LaLiga to the runners-up spot following the sacking of Ronald Koeman.

Xavi’s turbulent 2024 with Barcelona

  • January 27, 2024 – Xavi announces he will walk away from Barcelona, describing the role as “cruel and unpleasant”.
  • April 24, 2024 – Barcelona announce Xavi has reversed his decision and will take the team into next season.
  • May 24, 2024 – Xavi is sacked as Barcelona manager.

Barca were crowned champions in his first full season in charge, but they subsequently failed to mount a serious challenge this time round, surrendering their title to rivals Real Madrid.

Xavi: Next Barca boss will ‘suffer’

Xavi will leave his role as Barcelona head coach at the end of the season
Departing Barca boss Xavi had a warning for his successor

Earlier this week, Xavi warned his successor to be prepared to “suffer” in the job.

“To the new manager, I tell you: You will suffer. This is a very complicated place to be,” Xavi said after his final match in charge, a 2-1 win over Sevilla.

“This is a difficult job and you have to be patient.”

Xavi does not have another job lined up and is prepared to wait for the right offer.

He said: “Nothing is closed. I’m a professional, let’s see what happens in the future. Of course I’m open (to a new job), but I think 100 per cent I need to rest a little bit.

“It’s so difficult to coach Barcelona. It’s been tough last week, but I have my conscience very clear. I’m proud and happy.

“When we got here we knew it was a difficult time for the club and I think we can be proud of the work we have done.”

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