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Thread: Ernesto Cowardverde

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    Quote Originally Posted by FinBarcelonafan View Post
    So true. I feel like they are not enjoying themselves.
    Even Valverde always looks like he doesn't enjoy it watching City play and comparing it to our games is so depressing. I don't think our squad is that bad, it would just need some tweaks and fresh players here and there. Most important change would be the coach.

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    Some times EV just cant help himself but troll it looks like... Post match comments

    “This was a great chance to take a look at some of the younger players and the ones that don’t get to play as much. We want to avoid overloading people like Semedo, Busquets and Rakitic with too many games.”
    "If you understand football you make substitutions during the game, if you don't you make comments after it." ~~ Stoichkov

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    Ernie's dream Fifa team:


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    I have a bad feeling that whenever a lesbian looks at me they think “That’s why I’m not a heterosexual”.

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    Quote Originally Posted by shadows View Post
    We want to avoid overloading people like Semedo, Busquets and Rakitic with too many games
    Every single fan who have once chanted my name at Camp Nou. I've loved every minute of fighting for you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by George_Costanza View Post



    He actually said Leonesa was a big test for B team players.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Barcaman View Post



    He actually said Leonesa was a big test for B team players.
    What's wrong? B team players need to perform with the 1st team. It's a big test for them.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Barcaman View Post



    He actually said Leonesa was a big test for B team players.
    Why isn't it a big test for them?

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    Valverde was never the perfect fit. That should be painfully clear to even his greatest supporters and defenders by now. However Valverde cannot be blamed for the failure of the sporting project itself. That is the responsibility of the present board as was proven with past managers in previous seasons.

    As I see it the problems are much deeper and much more worrying than just the position of the manager. Pep could have been the manager and many of the squad's present problems and challenges would have persisted if status quo was kept intact. Namely the aging core and spine (Piqué, Busquets, Rakitic, Messi, Suárez) of the team naturally declining in level, hunger, discipline etc. Or Messi, Suárez and friends having too much power and too much say in the dressing room which turned out to be the case last season when they rotated far too little. As was the case under Lucho. I highly doubt that Valverde was not willing to rotate them more. They simply did not want to rest when necessary, as Valverde had and continues to have little authority over the dressing room. I recall Suárez admitting that not long ago when talking about that dreadful Roma game. Another example was Iniesta's commnets during the half-time in Rome. You would never have seen such comments under Pep's tenure. Or Suárez systematically openly shouting/pointing fingers at his teammates (Dembélé and others being on the receiving end) numerous times without consequences. Or Busquets and Pique openly defying Lucho's tactics publicly or squad team members "bashing" a teammate (Dembélé) in public in the media. Those are all symptoms of underlining problems that somehow are brushed under the carpet by the majority of the fans and Catalan/Spanish media because it is always easier to criticize the manger or remove him if necessary.

    In hindsight strange and unexplainable transfers such as the Coutinho transfer (I was critical of this transfer not because I don't rate Coutinho but because tactically he was/is not the right fit if the aim was to replace Iniesta, nor is he a winger in our 4-3-3 system and in turn him playing such a role limits the game time of Dembélé, an actual fit on the wings in a 4-3-3), the manager not getting the required decision-making power (as otherwise practiced under Pep and when the Cruyff model genuinely works) to make most of the transfer decisions etc.

    Take Valverde as an example (I am no fan). You can't expect him or any other manager to truly succeed in a genuine Cruyff model if he is not given the power that Pep was given under Laporta from 2008 to 2010. The "fatigue excuse" of Pep back in 2012 was nothing more than an excuse. One of the reasons why Pep left (by most accounts) was Rosell's tenure and the start of a new sporting model where the manager did not have most of the powers in regards to transfers and other decision-makings. Pep wanted to make profound changes back in 2012 to rejuvenate the squad but was prevented by the board from doing so. Likewise Lucho if rumors are to be believed (very probable if you ask me).

    Valverde is a yes-man so he is perfect for Bartomeu and the board. It is impossible to expect great or long-lasting things in such a sporting environment almost regardless of the manager at the helm.

    It is important for people to understand that the problems are much greater than just Valverde. Even the best managers out there could/can only do so much in our circumstances. The case is not much different at Real Madrid given that they are bound for a generational change as well that already began with the sale of Ronaldo.

    If the club wants to repeat past successes and continue the extremely succesfull Cruyff model that has worked each single time when it has been applied correctly since 1988 (in fact since 1990 as it took Cruyff 2 seasons for his ideas to gain foothold at the club), the current way the club is being run by the board (this obviously includes managerial appointments, transfers etc.) must change.

    Lastly, Valverde, to remove any doubts, is not my cup of tea (I never wanted him) but far too many fans falsely believe that Valverde is the root cause of all evil and that his removal and an appointment of a better manager, will solve most of the current issues. I am afraid that this won't be the case unless the actual fundament (sporting project) fundamentally changes for the better.

    There is no doubt that Bartomeu and the board should be blamed for the club's decline since 2012, at least on the European front, despite an ever growing budget, wages and more expensive transfers each season and a once in a lifetime talent (Messi) at their disposal. Results are not everything (they have been overall very good if not great, especially domestically in that period) to begin with when it comes to the sporting project. For a long time I have struggled to spot any genuine long-term planning and I am really "afraid" that the current board will only make it worse in the next 2 upcoming seasons before the 2021 elections where the current board will hopefully be replaced. In particular as the current generation of players and what is left of them, our most successful generation that is, retires and leaves. Instead of making difficult but necessary changes and parting company with "has-beens" like Rakitic, Busquets, Piqué, Suárez etc. the club is rewarding them with long-term deals and wage increases. Is Valverde to blame for all of that as well? Cadeau to Xavi and Iniesta for actually stepping down in time.
    Even my all-time favorite, Messi, as he is being used at times at least by Valverde and in our current "system", is at times hindering our teamplay, in particular in the defensive part of the game and when playing against top teams in the CL as seen at times in recent years. However Messi is the least of our "problems".

    I hope that I will be proven wrong but so far (past few seasons) that has not been the case, unfortunately. It is a sad state of affairs because most clubs, including the very best clubs of late, would give their right hand to be in our position. Even more so a few years ago.

    Lastly, I wholeheartedly agree with most of the criticism labelled at Valverde but the criticism of him in this thread (at least the posts that I have read recently after my break from this forum) are way too one-sided and simplistic. It's as if Valverde is the only thing that stands between the club winning multiple tripletes in a row.
    Last edited by Leo_Messi; 7th December 2018 at 04:40 AM.
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    Of course, the board is a problem, it's been said and addressed many times. But there's simply no excuse for young prospects to be regressing so badly under EV. The fact that EV is making it worse, a catalyst for a crumbling project.

    Let's not even talk about Cryuff model. Even simple rotations cannot be done, something about motivating players is not even in his books.

    Obviously he isn't the root cause, but he is doing the bare minimum to make the situation better. Like how some people blame players for not trying hard enough, but for the players' development, it is the man-in-charge. Barcelona is a mess from top to bottom. Everyone knows that.

    People are just crituquing EV as an individual, as the face of this squad, whether he is a man of his words. Apparently, he is an inept simple yes man, who's more worried about his CV than the future of the club.

    My biggest wish is for Bartomeu and co. to fuck off, trust me, not just EV. That doesnt mean we can sweep him under the carpet, and lie to ourselves saying this man is not a big obstruction. This doesnt give EV the privillege to hide behind results and say we are doing great and then the press or fans to blame the players. EV could move to another big club and still fail because he just isnt that man to take such a big job, especially when you think of a club like Barcelona and the philosophy that made them so successful in the first place.

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    That's a very fair critique on Valverde and the club in general @Leo_Messi and a great post, and I agree for the most part although I believe a better manager would get better results out of this flawed structure, although as you covered would not solve anything. Will paper over the cracks and the real underlying issues with the club.


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    Quote Originally Posted by henias View Post
    Of course, the board is a problem, it's been said and addressed many times. But there's simply no excuse for young prospects to be regressing so badly under EV. The fact that EV is making it worse, a catalyst for a crumbling project.

    Let's not even talk about Cryuff model. Even simple rotations cannot be done, something about motivating players is not even in his books.

    Obviously he isn't the root cause, but he is doing the bare minimum to make the situation better. Like how some people blame players for not trying hard enough, but for the players' development, it is the man-in-charge. Barcelona is a mess from top to bottom. Everyone knows that.

    People are just crituquing EV as an individual, as the face of this squad, whether he is a man of his words. Apparently, he is an inept simple yes man, who's more worried about his CV than the future of the club.

    My biggest wish is for Bartomeu and co. to fuck off, trust me, not just EV. That doesnt mean we can sweep him under the carpet, and lie to ourselves saying this man is not a big obstruction. This doesnt give EV the privillege to hide behind results and say we are doing great and then the press or fans to blame the players. EV could move to another big club and still fail because he just isnt that man to take such a big job, especially when you think of a club like Barcelona and the philosophy that made them so successful in the first place.
    I am not defending Valverde. I am merely giving my opinion about what I find worrying at the club currently (Valverde without a doubt being a big worry this season, more so than last season) and Valverde is obviously one such worry but he is far from my only worry. I am simply trying to look at the wider picture. At least from my perspective. As much as I have been criticizing Valverde in person and on social media, I know that the problems and challenges are multilayered and run much deeper than that. Valverde, can in theory, lose his job tomorrow morning and the problems and challenges that I mentioned (far from all that are present, mind you) would remain intact. Valverde or no Valverde.

    Let us be honest. In many ways the squad is dysfunctional. The main core of our team (harshly put) are mostly has-beens who have seen far better days. Our youngsters, while overall very talented (IMO), are just that, youngsters, who for one or another reason, have largely lacked the continuity, trust and the confidence that usually follows with continuous playing time. How many entire games have Dembélé managed to play in a row from the beginning to the end (90 minutes)? I think it's 2 games of 90 minute each in a row. Or the likes of Semedo. I won't even mention Malcom.

    Or the obvious hierarchy present in the squad and the old guard having way too much influence which leads to some of the episodes that I mentioned. It being impossible for the old guard due to age and having won everything that you can win in club football not once, not twice but several times to show the same degree of hunger, attention, loyalty to the manager's tactics etc. as they initially did from 2008 onwards (Pep's tenure etc.).

    Let's assume that Valverde is to be blamed for most of the problems. Where the hell is the board? Should they not be the first ones to ensure that the sporting project remains an actual sporting project and that manager x or y is fateful to the sporting project (Cruyff model) that has made this club what it is largely by all accounts?

    If you read my recent post in the Puig thread (my first post in that thread) you will notice that I see no reason why a player like Puig cannot get many more first-team opportunities not just next season but already this season in several league games (at least at the Camp Nou) or in the Copa.

    I am by no means defending some of Valverde's (to put it mildly) strange decisions and lack of cojones but I do (personally) believe that he is not always to be blamed. At least not entirely. Case in point the rotations in the past or at present. In short, Valverde has been dealt a bad hand in general, and although I don't particularly rate him too highly, nor am I impressed or satisfied with our playing style (or lack thereof) let alone that dreadful Roma game (one of my greatest disappoints as a supporter since the 4-1 trashing at the Mestalla in the 1999-2000 Champions League seminal against Héctor Cúper's Valencia, Barça-Inter back in 2010, Barça-Chelsea 2012) and his lack of rotations, I firmly believe, at least when it comes to rotations, that the players (mainly old guard) are not helping him at all or the board in terms of the squad planning.

    Valverde's media talk is what it is. It's not to be taken too seriously. Even Pep was not the type of manager to bash his team in public or individual players.

    Anyway we don't disagree. Valverde is not the right man for the club. Let alone the board. Likewise the club needs to part ways with some (if not a few) of our core players this upcoming summer rather than giving them new long-term contracts that further increase their already very high wages.

    Quote Originally Posted by DonAK View Post
    That's a very fair critique on Valverde and the club in general @Leo_Messi and a great post, and I agree for the most part although I believe a better manager would get better results out of this flawed structure, although as you covered would not solve anything. Will paper over the cracks and the real underlying issues with the club.
    Spot on. Well said. I am afraid that Bartomeu and the board do not see the situation in the same manner or at least not the majority of the board members. Sadly. Otherwise they would not be giving those long-term contracts (obviously with even higher wages) to the usual suspects. Messi can only do so much. At least if there were some kind of visible sporting project, I might have been more optimistic. Personally I might not have agreed with such a sporting project but at least I would knew that there was one. Now though? I struggle to spot anything. Do the board even have a clue about a possible replacement for Valverde next summer should he and the club not decide to extend the contract another year? The board should already have a replacement lined up, a list of players to target next summer etc. Somehow I struggle to believe that this is the case.
    Last edited by Leo_Messi; 7th December 2018 at 06:05 AM.
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    @Leo_Messi I think it is also very misleading to say EV has no power, ultimately he is the coach who makes decisions on who to start and what not, he even tried rotating against Leganes and Bilbao, so you cannot say he has no power. Subsequently, he got too afraid to take risks because of the bad scoreline and his failure to develop players, you could see he immediately resort to old guards ever since.

    No one is asking EV to do crazy rotations, but the least he could do is just rest majority of the starters before a CL match and try to be more well balanced in terms of game time to reduce chances of injuries. So I'm not sure how wages come into play here.

    On the contrary, Catalan media hardly criticised Valverde and has mostly put the blame on players.

    If you want to discuss about the board's problems, go ahead, I wholeheartedly agree with their problems. I could also say EV is not making good use of the recent big signings which affects the board's recent planning and expenditure, which would resort in them trying to spend even more, thinking they are all failures. I also highly doubt EV would succeed at another big club, especially for clubs looking for a long term successor.

    What I'm trying to say is these are all big issues, but one problem doesnt make the other problem any less. I could go finger-pointing who should take the biggest blame, but this will never end. All of us know Bartomeu is a root problem, but I don't think people were discussing about that anyway.

    And it's not like Bartomeu was hiring good managers anyway, all these are mediocre coaches. If Bartomeu hired Pep, there would still be problems but he still wouldnt look like a mediocre coach grinding results every week. That's what people is trying to say. You cannot say Valverde has zero influence, if Valverde was replaced with a good manager you would still see less problems. Even someone like Lucho could still get a make an impact in phasing out old players like Xavi.

    I totally get your point saying Bartomeu is a root problem, but that isnt what people is trying to say when it comes to Valverde. It's not like he is under fire from the media because he is trying his best to get results to avoid any criticism.
    Last edited by henias; 7th December 2018 at 05:56 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by henias View Post
    @Leo_Messi I think it is also very misleading to say EV has no power, ultimately he is the coach who makes decisions on who to start and what not, he even rotated against Leganes and Bilbao, so you cannot say he has no power. Ultimately, he got too afraid to take risks because of the bad scoreline and his failure to develop players, you could see he immediately resort to old guards ever since.

    No one is asking EV to do crazy rotations, but the least he could do is just rest majority of the starters before a CL match and try to be more well balanced in terms of game time to reduce chances of injuries. So I'm not sure how wages come into play here.

    On the contrary, Catalan media hardly criticised Valverde and has mostly put the blame on players.

    If you want to discuss about the board's problems, go ahead, I wholeheartedly agree with their problems. I could also say EV is not making good use of the recent big signings which affects the board's recent planning and expenditure, which would resort in them trying to spend even more, thinking they are all failures. I also highly doubt EV would succeed at another big club, especially for clubs looking for a long term successor.

    What I'm trying to say is these are all big issues, but one problem doesnt make the other problem any less. I could go finger-pointing who should take the biggest blame, but this will never end. All of us know Bartomeu is a root problem, but I don't think people were discussing about that anyway.

    And it's not like Bartomeu was hiring good managers anyway, all these are mediocre coaches. If Bartomeu hired Pep, there would still be problems but he still wouldnt look like a mediocre coach grinding results every week. That's what people is trying to say.
    Once again, I never said that he has no power. Not sure how you made such a conclusion. I am merely saying that the club has no current sporting project (as I see it) let alone employing the historically successful Cruyff model. What I am saying (and I believe that this should be beyond any doubt) is that Valverde is not calling the shoots. Far from it. In particular when it comes to transfers. Him having little authority in the dressing room does not help either. If the old guard wants Valverde gone, he will be gone within days if not hours. Now try to convince me of believing that Valverde would have the power and authority to tell the board to (for instance) sell Piqué. I can't imagine this being the case.

    Not sure why you are arguing about Valverde's rotations or lack thereof as if I was defending this part of his job. I never did that. However you are totally omitting the role of the old guard (mainly) here. Read Suárez's own comments in this regard about his egoism and lack of judgement in regards to resting more before crucial CL games. Same story with Messi who until very recently refused to rest at all if not injured. You are mentioning Pep, as I initially did. Let's take him as an example. Do you really think that the old guard would have been able to get away with such behavior under a strong manager like Pep who regularly rotates? Of course not.

    Wages come into the overall picture of the problems and challenges that the club is facing. Valverde is relevant here as Valverde has much, much less power, despite being the manager, than the old guard has. Messi alone is thrice as powerful as Valverde if that can do it.

    Yes, the local media is generally (aside from Sport at times) not too vocal against Valverde. Do you know why that is? MD (the largest and most widely read local sports paper and the by far oldest and most "prestigious") is owned and run by Grupo Godó and the director of MD (Santi Nolla) is a close buddy of Bartomeu and the current board and doing their bidding (propaganda and closing his eyes to the obvious problems that have been ongoing for years) and that of Rosell prior to his "decision" to step down as president back in January 2014. Sport are mostly the ones that are most critical of Valverde and the direction that the club is going. If MD where to criticize Valverde, they would be indirectly criticizing the board and thye would be forced to raise the underlining issues and problems that the club and board are struggling with. Not good.

    In general most of the local fans are living in their own bubble where Barça is the undisputed hegemon of European football and everything is rosy. Less so nowadays (thanks to Real Madrid's CL success) but it's not more than 2 years ago this was the case at an even bigger scale than currently. The two main local papers are partly to blame for that. Another reason is that the current era (post-2003) has been the most successful era in the club's history by far. A lot of the older fans were used to, aside from the 1950's, to more disappointments than successes. By far. The 1960's, 1970's and 1980's were overall very bad decades for the club (to put it into perspective, the club managed to win 2 league titles between 1960-1990 = 30 seasons!) compared to Madrid's 19 league titles in the same period!) in particular compared to RM who dominated the domestic league in a horrible fashion during those 3 decades and that dominance is the only reason why they to this very day have won 8 more league titles than us despite Barça having had the clear upper hand domestically since 1990 (almost 3 decades as well). Likewise our board is much less ruthless than Florentino Pérez for good and bad.

    Anyway, I am not a Valverde supporter so not the right person to have a discussion with in this regard as I don't believe that you and I and most users here for that matter or fans of the club for that matter (at least if we remove the older lot), have too diverging opinions about Valverde.

    Let us not even attempt to compare Pep with Valverde.
    Last edited by Leo_Messi; 7th December 2018 at 06:17 AM.
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    @Leo_Messi I get what you are saying with the board making poor choices, not re-investing in the squad wisely etc, For example No backup for Pique even though he has sucked for quite a while, same with Suarez although they did try to get rid of him....I agree that senior players are complacent (especially Pique and Busquets), but i do not think for one second, Messi doesn`t want to win the champions league..He probably knows his legacy depends on it and given the team around him, especially the way they play, it looks unlikely as our team currently looks like how Argentina looked in the World cup..getting over run in midfield etc

    Coming to Valverde, my problem with him is his over-conservativeness aka Mourinho 2.0..what does he do last season, go up 1-0 or 2-0 then start parking the bus (call it conserving energy or whatsoever). What he did moreorless was run Iniesta to the ground, playing him each and every game non stop. But i gave him a pass for last season because what other option did he have..start Gomes over Iniesta?? Come on, now.. Now this season, that defensive solidarity is gone because Pique and Busquets suck even more...On top of it, Rakitic comes off a long and tiring world cup and what does he do..stick Rakitic in midfield for each and every minute without rest or rotation even though he has a comparable option now in Vidal.... and I dont think Rakitic has that much dressing room influence to keep picking himself each and every minute nor does Messi...Its up to the coach in this case. Similarly Sergi Roberto walking right back in from injury to the starting 11 (Now he is a senior too?)...Moreover, i dont think either Messi or Suarez, even if they did pick themselves, are unreasonablly and averse to resting themselves.. You can talk about say how Cristiano Ronaldo rested himself through the season and won the Champions league and so on.. But since EV wants to rack his trophy count, he doesn`t want to go all in on the champions either and puts his strongest set of players playing every game in the Copa...plus dont get me started on his boring style of play which our team does thanks to his dependence on older players and lack of off the ball movement,....

    What can be done? Getting rid of Valverde for starters.. But i think its time we got rid of Pique and Busquets too... Most of our bad play seems to originate from them and they make way too many mistakes per game which makes it highly unlikely we have any chance of winning the champions league...But finally its also up to the board to hire a competent person to lead us next, not another Mourinho 3.0.. They seem to have corrected their mistakes from Lucho`s era now but thats like 2 years late..
    Last edited by shadows; 7th December 2018 at 07:48 AM.
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