By Brian Bariyo Tumuramye
Barcelona boss Ernesto Valverde is under pressure following the club’s Champions League draw with Slavia Prague.
Barcelona may sack Ernesto Valverde if he doesn’t pull up his socks over the coming weeks with Roberto Martinez being the clear favourite for the job, according to reports.
The Spaniard is under pressure at the Nou Camp amid the Catalan giants’ insipid displays, with Tuesday’s goalless draw with Slavia Prague a particular low point.
Barcelona look a far cry from their usual selves with the likes of Lionel Messi, Antoine Griezmann and Frenkie De Jong all struggling of late and if Barca continue to struggle over the coming weeks, club president Josep Maria Bartomey may wield the axe.
The 55-year-old is facing a crunch time ahead because they have two more games against Celta Vigo and FC Cartagena respectively, before the international break,
And if they fail to beat both teams it’s feasible that Barcelona will act, despite sitting top of the La Liga table.
After the international break, Barcelona will go up against Leganes, Borussia Dortmund and Atletico Madrid in a space of eight days and Valverde needs his side to be at their blockbuster best if he’s to see out a third campaign at the Nou Camp.
Martinez is focused on helping the Red Devils prepare for the upcoming European Championships but could be enticed into taking over until the end of the season.
The bookies believe he may head to the Nou Camp with the Spaniard the clear favourite over the likes of Ronald Koeman and Xavi.
Meanwhile, speaking after the draw with Slavia Prague, the Barcelona manager admitted he understood the fans’ reaction to the result after the La Liga champions were booed and jeered off the pitch.
And Valverde said: “It’s OK for people to demand more “You always like to win. Today, the truth is that we have not been right (when it has come to converting the) clear chances that we have had.
“They, without creating clear opportunities, caused danger when they stole the ball from us because they came out very fast against us (on the counter attack). “We couldn’t convert the dominance we had into opportunities,” he noted/