Barcelona made a mistake in hiring Quique Setien

Quique Setien of FC Barcelona. (Photo by Lluis GENE / AFP) (Photo by LLUIS GENE/AFP via Getty Images)
Quique Setien of FC Barcelona. (Photo by Lluis GENE / AFP) (Photo by LLUIS GENE/AFP via Getty Images) /

Barcelona’s draw against Atletico Madrid should be the final straw.

Quique Setien took over a Barcelona team who had almost completely deviated from their brand of football cultivated under Pep Guardiola. When he took over from Ernesto Valverde, the idea was that he would bring back that type of football given his philosophy.

But none of that has happened. It’s been par for the course since he took over. The Catalans came into the restart with a two point lead on Real Madrid in the table. Now, they find themselves a point behind with Madrid likely to increase that lead by the time the next game rolls around.

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It has become quite clear that the club made a mistake in hiring Setien and that the club has proved to be too big of a challenger for the former Real Betis man.

Setien has not managed to improve the side and has reverted back to the ways of his predecessor.

He’s reverted to relying on the old guard despite some members of the old guard no longer being able to produce.

While he may have scored twice in their draw against Celta Vigo, Luis Suarez has been too inconsistent and even coming back from injury, Setien has opted to give him countless opportunities even when it’s clear he doesn’t have it.

His treatment of Arthur and Antoine Griezmann also leave much to be desired.

Against Sevilla, Celta Vigo and now Atletico Madrid, Setien has kept the Frenchman on the bench. Against Atletico, needing a goal to keep any semblance of title hopes alive, he brings him in at the 90th minute where he’s unlikely to have nowhere near enough time to do anything.

He cost the club €120 million and if he can’t come in sooner when the season is on the line, then something is seriously wrong.

All the blame does not fall on the shoulders of Setien.

It would be unfair to place the blame on Barcelona’s dismal season on Setien. He was put in a difficult position in terms of the squad and with the fact that he was not the board’s first choice. He was Plan C or D once everyone else they offered the job to turned them down.

He tried to play a different way when he first arrived including playing with a back three. But he moved away from that after only a couple of matches. The squad he has at his disposal are perhaps not equipped to play the way he wants his team to play.

Still, that does not serve as an excuse for dropping points against Celta Vigo or not being able to beat Atletico Madrid at home.

He clearly no longer has the backing of his players if he ever had it to begin with. He seems out of his depth and unable to handle the personalities in his dressing room.

The candidates who turned Barcelona down did so for a reason. They knew the mess they would potentially be getting themselves into. Setien was more than happy to do so because he thought he’d never get an opportunity as good as this one.

Next. Getafe exercise the option to buy Barcelona’s Marc Cucurella. dark

In many respects, it was a dream job. That dream has quickly turned into a nightmare. Setien is not the only one responsible for their league failures. In the end, he’s going to be a scapegoat for a grossly incompetent Barcelona board.