Optimistic Ronald Koeman: We will make a great team for next season

The coach is happy with how recruitment is going and waiting on two signatures

| sport

Good vibes. That’s the way Ronald Koeman is looking at next season with Barcelona. He’s on holiday in his homeland but is not disconnected from football, going to watch the Netherlands beat Austria on Thursday. He’s also constantly in contact with Barca over planning for next season.

One of the places he went was Gronigen, who built a statue of his father Martin. Ronald debuted as a player in 1980 at the club too. SPORT spoke to the coach there.

“The perspective is good,” said Koeman. “I know the club is working hard to form a competitive team, better than last season. I’m convinced the squad would be stronger.”

Koeman is hoping to start this season much better than he did his first, with the club reeling from the 8-2 defeat by Bayern and the Messi Burofax.

Koeman is waiting for two signatures. Lionel Messi on a new contract is the first. “I’ve always said that Messi has to finish his career at Barca, so I hope they can seal his future soon. I think they can, it will be great news for everyone.”

The other is Memphis Depay, with nothing official yet but everyone virtually admitting it’s done. ‘It’s not complete because the signature is not there yet but it’s almost done,” said Koeman. “I hope he can come, he’s an interesting player.”

On Gini Wijnaldum, who signed for PSG and not Barca, Koeman was sad. “It’s a pity because he was a good player, and many clubs rented him. I think we lacked a bit of convincing on our part which could have been decisive, in the end PSG overtook us.”

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