Financial turmoil threaten to cripple their very existence, but Barcelona are back in the big time with Xavi Hernandez at the helm.
A 4-2 victory over local rivals Espanyol sealed a convincing La Liga triumph for La Blaugrana, their first since 2019.
It’s been a mightily difficult period for the Catalonians with mismanagement at the top ultimately leading to the departure of Lionel Messi amid several years of underperformance. Their woes off the pitch proved overbearing, but the return of Joan Laporta as president combined with the club’s faith in a project manager has brought about some stability.
There’s still a long way to go until they’re in the clear, however.
Nevertheless, Xavi’s achievement of guiding Barça to the La Liga title was not only impressive given the context, but he also became just the fifth legend to win the Spanish league title at Camp Nou as both a player and a manager.
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Barcelona’s first ‘great’ team was their outfit of the 1920s. This was a legendary side coached by the club’s longest-ever serving manager, Englishman Jack Greenwell.
The Catalans were utterly dominant during this period and Samitier was regarded among the club’s superstars. The midfielder, who debuted in 1919, lifted Barcelona’s first-ever La Liga title in 1929 and would retire as the club’s most prolific marksman.
He returned to the club as manager in 1944 during World War II and was a La Liga champion for the second time a year later. Samitier’s a legendary figure in Catalonia, even if his relationship with the club did deteriorate in the 1960s.
Johan Cruyff is the guy at Barcelona. The Dutchman is largely responsible for transforming the club and evolving them into the footballing supergiant they’ve been regarded as throughout the 21st century.
The dazzling Dutch superstar was a majestic playmaker who took his talents to Barcelona in 1973. It didn’t take long for Cruyff to establish himself as a hero in Catalonia, as he helped the club to their first La Liga title since 1960 in 1974.
However, this was just the start of Cruyff’s revolution. His fearless attacking ideals…