Ronald Koeman has been at Barcelona for less than a month but it seems he’s already done enough to have earned a nickname from his players.
According to Luis F. Rojo at Marca, there is “already talk of Sergeant Koeman within the dressing room” after the Dutchman insisted on introducing longer and harder training sessions.
Koeman made the move because sessions at Barcelona “haven’t been up to standard for some time” which helps to explain “performances against the likes of Bayern Munich and Liverpool.”
One of Koeman’s priorities after arriving at the club was “to get the team training as if their lives depended on it.” Training sessions are now more intense and have been increased from an hour to 90 minutes.
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Double Sessions for Barcelona
Koeman has stepped up pre-season preparations this week ahead of the big La Liga kick-off with double sessions on Tuesday and Wednesday.
🏋️♀️ x 2️⃣ Tuesday
🏋️♀️ x 2️⃣ Wednesday
— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) September 6, 2020
Barcelona have been happy to show off their stars in action on the training ground as they gear up for a new campaign.
— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona_cat) September 8, 2020
Koeman is known for his no-nonsense approach and has already made it clear he’s willing to take tough decisions at the Camp Nou. The Dutch coach has already told Luis Suarez, Ivan Rakitic, and Arturo Vidal they are no longer needed at the club.
Koeman Clear on Tactics
The new Barcelona boss has also been focused on tactics as well as hard work ahead of the start of the league season in Spain. The former Netherlands manager has already decided he’ll go with a 4-2-3-1 formation, according to Mundo Deportivo’s Fernando Polo.
The system will see Barcelona using a double pivot which will be good news for Frenkie de Jong. The midfielder played in the same role for former club Ajax and for Koeman with the Netherlands national team.
Koeman also wants Messi as a “false right-winger” and will allow his captain to roam freely across the attack. However, the Dutchman is clear that he does not want Messi going in search of the ball and wants him focused on scoring and creating goals.
The new Barcelona boss will be keen for a good start to the campaign after the club finished 2019-20 empty-handed and saw their off-season overshadowed by uncertainty over Messi’s future.