The turmoil at Barcelona over the last week since Lionel Messi effectively gave the club his notice only to reluctantly rescind it, is more than enough for the club to deal with.
However, the stark reality away from all of the drama is that the club have a new coach in Ronald Koeman who finds himself under the most intense pressure already without a ball even being kicked in anger.
Indeed, there are still three weeks to go before Barca open their LaLiga account for 2020/21, given their participation in the latter stages of the Champions League.
The Dutchman apparently made it perfectly clear who was boss when he first met with Messi, and ahead of a reunion between the pair at training on Monday, Koeman has metaphorically flexed his muscles once again.
With both Luis Suarez and Arturo Vidal negotiating exits to Juventus and Inter Milan respectively, ESPN report that the coach has told the experienced pairing that they must train alone and away from the rest of the first-team squad.
Koeman’s hard line, compared to Quique Setien’s much friendlier approach, isn’t likely to win him any friends, but if Barca win titles and play well, there are unlikely to be too many complaints.
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