When Luis Enrique promised a brand new FC Barcelona team, one that was full of hope and winning ways, he meant it. And as Enrique ends his Barca stint with another Copa Del Rey championship, football fans can wave goodbye to an amazing run.
Enrique, also known as “Lucho”, took the coaching spotlight in 2004 as the new manager of Barca. Since then, the Spanish coach has paved the team’s way to the top of various leagues.
Being a seasoned player since the late 80’s to 2004, Lucho knew every corner of the game. He was also a consisent member of the Spanish National Team, playing midfielder for 12 straight years.
Some of his career highlights include one of football’s most iconic comebacks when Barca manhandled Paris Saint Germain, 6-1 right after the team had lost 0-4 during their first outing. He’s also a manager with bold moves. Although Enrique does manage a team that is heavily bound by a rich tradition, his coaching style deviates away just enough to still fall under the Barca way.
He’s a born mastermind, too. When Enrique brought in three of football’s most sought out superstars Leo Messi, Luis Suarez, and Neymar Jr., he immediately received criticisms. Experts would call out the 9-year veteran, saying that it would be impossible to bring the trio to play together as a team. But nine major championships later and a long list of achievements, he’s proven everybody wrong.
For most of the Barca’s fans, Enrique’s brilliance on the pitch will surely be missed. But at just 47 years old, sky’s the limit for the former manager. He leaves Barcelona with legacy to remind them of a winning attitude, excellent tactics, and a skillful mind.