Published: Mon, January 20, 2020
Sport | By Ruben Hill

Zinedine Zidane: I'm sorry for Ernesto Valverde

Zinedine Zidane: I'm sorry for Ernesto Valverde

Quique Setien's first task at Barcelona will be a hard one: Replace injured striker Luis Suarez.

"Every morning when I wake up I say to myself "I'm going to go and coach these players", Setien told a news conference on Saturday.

Barcelona have announced their squad that will tackle Granada in tonight's La Liga fixture at the Camp Nou.

The Spaniard was ushered in in what signposted the beginning of new reign after the embarrassing sacking of their former boss Ernesto Valverdes.

Inter are paying close attention to Arturo Vidal's situation at Barcelona and could go back in for him later in the transfer window according to a report in today's print edition of Corriere dello Sport. "But we have to think about the players that we have available". That is what really matters at the moment. One solution could be to use Messi as the "wrong" number 9.

Barcelona appointed Quique Setien as manager, replacing Valverde, who was sacked on the back of Barca's Supercopa elimination to Atletico Madrid.

While Barcelona may have missed out on Xavi this time, club president Josep Maria Bartomeu has no doubt he would one day return to coach the club in the future.

The 39-year old hung up his boots in May last year, playing his final game as a professional football in Al Sadd's Asian Champions League game against Persepolis of Iran.

What changed today from the other games under Valverde?

The coach will likely be able to count on the return of Marc-Andre ter Stegen on Sunday. The goalkeeper still has to play this year due to a knee disease. Yesterday the official account of Barcelona shared the video where Setien was seen flaunting his football skills.

Setien, 61, has been out of work since leaving Real Betis last summer and has signed a contract until 2022.

He practiced in Setien's first training with the main team on Tuesday and was followed closely by the new coach. I was waiting for this from the players, as they are now in the best technical, physical and mental conditions.

Ahead of the game, Setien addressed the press and said, "I guess they'll want to repeat the game that worked out well for them".

Setien never hid his admiration for Messi, calling him the best player in history, but he doesn't think that will affect the relationship between the coach and the player.

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