BARCELONA have sacked their manager Ernesto Valverde and have taken no time in replacing him.

The 55-year-old from Extremadura was in charge of the Catalan giants for two-and-a-half-years before being replaced by former Real Betis boss Quique Setien.

Txingurri – Valverde’s nickname – had led the Blaugrana to two successive league titles and had them top of the pile this season on goal difference.

However, the Catalans had been criticised for their style of play and had failed to reach the final of the Champions League during his tenure.

Valverde, 55, had previously managed other Spanish teams such as Espanyol, Valencia and Athletic Bilbao.

In a statement, Barca said they had reached an agreement with Valverde to terminate his contract and thanked him for ‘his professionalism, his commitment, his dedication and his always positive treatment towards all that make up the Barca family.’

Setien, 61, led Betis to their highest finish since 2005 and to the semi-finals of the Copa del Rey before leaving in May.

He has agreed to a two-and-a-half-year deal.

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