In the spring of 2008, FC Barcelona was a big name global brand that was losing its lustre. Frank Rijkaard, a Dutch disciple of Sir Cruyff and a former player had helped them scale massive heights. But they failed to win any major trophy for 2 yrs. The club needed a new Leadership. The authoritarian, charismatic Jose Mourinho looked like the obvious pick to cut big egos down and restore drive to a rudderless team. To the dismay of the majority of Barca’s members, the board chose to appoint a novice in Pep Guardiola.
CEO Ferran Soriano, Director of Football Txiki Begiristain and the club’s head of youth football Jose Ramon Alexanko are the directors who chose Pep guardiola for this job, alongside Laporta. Think of Barcelona as a restaurant. Txiki was the guy sourcing ingredients and deciding what goes on the menu. Soriano was already planning where they would open their restaurant. What they were looking for was a head chef to combine these.
Significantly, of the 9 point checklist, only 2- the style of play and a wide experience of European football- could be the skills required to coach a leading football team. They valued culture and success more than business. And thus appointed Pep Guardiola.
Credits- The Barcelona Way by Prof. Damian Hughes】
A must read for all Barcelona and Football Fans and everyone who wants an insight into the industry or wants to know about the importance of culture. Visca el Barca i Visca Catalunya !