BY SHIKHARR CHANDRA Follow @ShikharrC on twitter
Days after the unfortunate exit of former manager Tito Vilanova, Barcelona have appointed Gerardo Martino as their new manager. The Argentine leaves Newell Old Boys to take over the La Liga champions on a three-year deal.
“I feel identified with the style of football Barcelona play. I am an admirer of the work that Guardiola did. It’s the style I like the most. The respect for the ball, they play the ball from the back,the possession, the triangulations. The pass is the main premise of football.”- Gerardo Martino on FC Barcelona
Here are 10 things you need to know about the former Newell Old Boys manager as he steps up to take the vacant Barcelona job:
|1. Born in Rosario, Gerardo Martino who's nicknamed 'Tata', played most of his football for Argentine side Newell Old Boys.
2. In a fan poll back in 2003, Tata Martino was voted as Newell Old Boys greatest ever player. The midfielder made close to 500 appearances scoring 35 goals during his ten year spell with the club.
3. Unlike many managers, Martino does not have an agent and negotiates contracts himself.
4. Martino was a key player in the Newell's team which was being managed by former Bilbao manager Marcelo Beilsa.
5. Gerardo Martino's honours include 3 Argentine Primiera Division titles, 4 Paraguayan Primiera Divison titles and 1 South American Coach of the Year award which he won while in charge Paraguay.
6. The former Newell's Old Boys and Paraguayan coach is idolized by Lionel Messi's father, Jorge
7. Martino's links with Barcelona are long-drawn. The Argentine made his Tenerife debut at Nou Camp in a 1-0 defeat to Barcelona. Coincidentally, the man who is going to hire him, Andioni Zubizaretta was playing for Barcelona at the time.
8. Martino would become the first foreign manager at Barcelona since Frank Rijkaard left in 2008. He also becomes the first Argentine coach to take over Barcelona since 1983.
9. This will be Martino's first stint with a European club. In his last six seasons as manager, the Argentine has won the league 5 times.
10. The fomer Newell's manager made only one appearance for Argentina back in 1991.
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