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Ernesto Valverde's farewell me...
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Ernesto Valverde's farewell message to Barcelona

Phil Egan
Phil Egan

11:58 14 Jan 2020

Ernesto Valverde has broken his silence after being sacked by Barcelona on Monday evening. 

Valverde is the first manager to be sacked by the La Liga champions mid-season since Louis van Gaal in January 2003.

Valverde met with Barca president Josep Maria Bartomeu on Monday at the club's training ground and the club wasted little time in announcing that Quique Setién was taking over.

Barca, who are top of La Liga on goal difference ahead of Real Madrid, won back-to-back league titles under Valverde but failure in the Champions League always worked against him.

Barca lost on away goals to Roma in the quarter-finals in 2018 despite winning the first leg 4-1 at the Nou Camp and a year later the Catalans surrendered a three-goal advantage to lose 4-3 on aggregate to Liverpool in the semi-finals.

Barca let a three-goal first-leg advantage slip against Roma and Liverpool respectively in the last two seasons.

Valverde reflected on his time at the club with a farewell message:

"My time as FC Barcelona coach has come to an end. It has been an intense two and a half years right from the start.

"In that time I have enjoyed some joyful moments celebrating victories and trophies but also others that have been tough and difficult.

"However, above all I would like to highlight my experience with the fans and the affection showed towards me during my time as coach.

"I would like to thank the president Josep Maria Bartomeu and the Board of Directors for giving me the opportunity to coach the first team and their confidence during all this time.

"I would also like to thank all the people I have worked with at the Club for their support and how they treated me during the two and a half seasons, especially those who work in and around the first team and with whom I have shared so many moments at the Ciutat Esportiva and during away trips.

"Of course, I would like to thank the players for all their efforts that have allowed us to claim four trophies together. From this day, I wish them all the luck in the world and to the new coach Quique Setién also.

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Barcelona Ernesto Valverde Josep Bartomeu La Liga Quique Setién

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