For the second time in his time as manager of La Liga giants Barcelona, Dutch manager Ronald Koeman had a nosebleed incident that made him, this time, cut short his media briefing ahead of La Blaugrana’s upcoming domestic fixture against fourth-placed Sevilla in gameweek 25 of Spanish football.
The manager was taking questions and providing answers when his presser was interrupted, and consequently ended prematurely due to the nosebleed he suffered live during the briefing.
His first public occurrence of the bleeding came before the Athletic Bilbao game last month. The most probable cause, according to a report by Javi Miguel, is that it is one of the side effects of the blood thinners Koeman takes to handle the heart problems he suffered in 2020.
Before the incident, the Catalan manager provided clarity on certain questions thrown at him. With Barcelona billed to face Sevilla in back to back matches for the League and Copa del Rey competitions respectively, Koeman said:
“There are two different games. Tomorrow we play for La Liga, and Wednesday for the Copa del Rey. We have to win both games and we hope to continue our unbeaten streak in the league tomorrow.”
Koeman addressed the inclusion of the previously injury-sidelined Ronald Araujo to the first team squad as well: “Araújo has entered the list and everyone who enters the list has options to play. We’ll decide our XI tomorrow.”
“Araújo has had a very good season so far. He’s young, but he has learned and shown a lot. He has a great physique level, he’s strong and fast, and he brings us many things defensively.”
Once again, the perennial discussion surrounding the team’s purported lack of leadership was broached especially given the number of veteran players in the squad.
In responding, Koeman singled out Lionel Messi for praise again, while calling for support from the rest: “Veteran players have tried to take control, but they can’t do it alone either. Messi has 17-18 goals, the same as everyone else put together. Responsibility must be shared.”
“I know that being a Barça coach there is always a lot of pressure. If you don’t win, it’s the manager’s mistake. I don’t know what could happen in the future, there is time to talk about that, but I’m optimistic,” Koeman said in regards to how he feels about his future as a Barcelona coach with the elections nearby.
Just before he abruptly had to excuse himself, Koeman commented on the imminent election for club president itself: “The elections? I will not vote because I think I don’t have to vote. I have to wait, and the socios will decide.”