Mauricio Pochettino Opens Door to Replacing Quique Setien at Barcelona

Mauricio Pochettino
Mauricio Pochettino has been out of work since his sacking from Tottenham last November | Rodrigo Valle/Getty Images

Former Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino has backtracked on previous comments saying that he’d never take up the managerial job at Barcelona, opening the door a crack for him to be Quique Setien’s successor at Camp Nou.

The pressure has mounted exponentially on Setien after the Catalans surrendered their La Liga title to Real Madrid for the first time since 2017, with the Spaniard struggling to impose his ideals and manage the bigger egos within the Barcelona squad.

Quique SetienQuique Setien
It’s been a mixed bag for Quique Setien thus far, but losing the title to Real Madrid was a huge blow | Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images

Despite receiving constant backing from the Barça board, Setien’s future at the club is in serious doubt and he may even depart following the conclusion of La Blaugrana’s Champions League run this month. It may take European glory for Setien to keep his job.

Mauricio Pochettino, meanwhile, has reopened the door to any potential managerial vacancy in Catalunya by backtracking on comments he made in 2018.

A club legend at Barça’s cross-city rivals Espanyol both as a player and coach, the Argentine once famously said that he would return to his farm in his homeland before taking over the reins at the Camp Nou.

The Catalan giants had a serious interest in hiring Pochettino following the January departure of Ernesto Valverde but Setien was hired instead, with the Argentine displaying a distinct lack of enthusiasm when Barça made an approach.

Espanyol's coach Mauricio Pochettino froEspanyol's coach Mauricio Pochettino fro
Pochettino oversaw 160 games in charge of Espanyol – his first of just three jobs in management thus far | JOSEP LAGO/Getty Images

He appears to have changed his tune, though.

“I did not want to disrespect Barcelona. I could have said things differently. Espanyol has made a name for me. But I’m not arrogant and I didn’t like making a statement like that. Maybe now I wouldn’t because in life you never know what will happen,” Pochettino said speaking to El Pais (via Forbes).

It appears the Argentine has dropped his name in the hat for the potential managerial sweepstake at Barcelona this summer, with the former Spurs boss out of work since his sacking from N17 last November.