Barcelona Announces Martino Step down

Barcelona have announced that manager Gerardo Martino has stepped down from his role after his failure to win any major trophy this season. Barcelona went into the last day of the season looking to at least retain the league title after they had suffered several exits in cup competitions like the Champions League and the Copa del Rey. However, a 1-1 draw with Atletico Madrid meant that Diego Simeone’s team won the title with a two-point advantage. The Argentine boss, who was appointed as the replacement for Tito Vilanova only last summer, had said prior to the match that his future was in major doubt following a poor campaign.

He also revealed that there was a clause in his two-year contract, which allowed him to leave the club after 12 months should both parties not be happy with the work. It has been revealed that the club has exercised his contract after coming to terms with Martino. The 52-year-old boss attempted to change the style of the club this campaign, as they played more long balls than ever. The 2-1 defeat against Real Madrid in the Copa del Rey final and the Champions League quarter-final exit at the hands of Atletico Madrid appeared to have sealed his fate.

The final nail in the coffin came in the form of the league defeat.

“I’m sorry I was unable to deliver. I’d like to thank the club for their confidence in me. I deeply regret not having achieved the goals that this club has always been set and achieved. These are great players. My greatest gratitude goes to the players. They have made me proud,” said the manager after announcing his exit. “We are grateful to ‘Tata’. This has been a tough season,” said the club sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta following the official announcement.