Barcelona appoint Hansi Flick as new head coach

football29 May 2024 12:00| © Reuters
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Hansi Flick © Barcelona FC

Barcelona appointed former Bayern Munich and Germany boss Hansi Flick as coach on Wednesday on a deal which runs till June 2026, after sacking Xavi Hernandez last week.

"FC Barcelona and Hansi Flick have reached an agreement for the German to become men's first team football coach until 30 June 2026," the club said in a statement.

"The new coach has signed a contract at the Club's offices accompanied by FC Barcelona president Joan Laporta."

Flick, who led German giants Bayern to a historic sextuple of trophies in 2020, became the first coach ever to be sacked by the German national team in September 2023 after a string of bad results.

However, Barcelona believe they have secured the services of a "champion coach".

"By bringing Hansi Flick as coach, FC Barcelona have chosen a man well-known for his teams’ high pressing, intense and daring style of play which has brought him great success at club level and international level, winning pretty much all there is to win in the world of football," read the club statement.

The 59-year-old occasionally watched Barcelona matches this season from the presidential box and was linked with the job after Xavi said in January he would depart at the end of a campaign in which they finished runners-up to Real Madrid in LaLiga.

Barcelona and Xavi decided jointly he would stay for next season after all in April but then Laporta changed his mind and sacked the former midfield great last week.

"It won't be easy at all – they will suffer and they will need patience because it's a really difficult job," Xavi warned his successor last week after winning his final match in charge against Sevilla in LaLiga.

"The only thing that can save them is winning, whether they have been part of the club or not."

As well as seeing Madrid win back the Spanish title, Barcelona were knocked out of the Champions League in the quarterfinals by Paris Saint-Germain.

Spanish media said Laporta was enraged by Xavi's comments earlier in May when he highlighted the economic difficulties Barca had when competing against Real and Europe's other elite clubs.