Skip to main content

Barcelona appoints Luis Enrique as new manager

updated 3:33 PM EDT, Mon May 19, 2014
Luis Enrique has signed a two-year deal with Barcelona after relinquishing his role at Celta Vigo.
Luis Enrique has signed a two-year deal with Barcelona after relinquishing his role at Celta Vigo.
  • Luis Enrique appointed new manager of Barcelona
  • Enrique replaces Tata Martino at Camp Nou
  • Former player a huge favorite at Catalan club
  • Enjoyed a fine season in charge at Celta Vigo

Follow us at @WorldSportCNN and like us on Facebook

(CNN) -- Barcelona has appointed Luis Enrique as the club's new manager just days after losing out on the La Liga title.

Enrique, who has resigned from his role at Celta Vigo following a successful season in charge, returns to the club where he starred as a player between 1996 and 2004.

The 44-year-old has signed a two-year deal and replaces Tata Martino, who left the club after just one season at the helm.

In a statement, the club confirmed that Enrique was appointed following an endorsement from sporting director, Andoni Zubizarreta.

Barcelona endured a disappointing season, failing to retain its league title and crashing out of the Champions League following a defeat by Atletico Madrid.

Atletico also pipped Barca to the league title by securing a final day draw at Camp Nou on Saturday.

Martino's side was also beaten by arch-rival Real Madrid in last month's Copa del Rey final.

His departure, which came following Saturday's draw, raised few eyebrows following a reign perpetuated by rumors of unrest within the camp.

The attention will now turn to Enrique, who guided Celta to an impressive ninth place finish in La Liga.

Enrique, who arrived at the club for the first time as a player in 18 years ago following a move from Real Madrid, became a huge favorite with the club's supporters.

He won two league titles, two Spanish Cups, a European Cup Winners Cup and a European Super Cup during his eight years at the Camp Nou.

Enrique played 300 games for the club, scoring 109 goals and captained the side between 2002-2004 before retiring.

In 2008, the former Spain international coached Barcelona B, winning promotion in his second season in charge before leaving to take over at Italian side Roma three years later.

At Roma, he guided the club to a seventh place finish in Serie A and into the semifinals of the Italian Cup.

He left his post after citing fatigue.

Read: Enrique leaves Roma

The confirmation of Enrique's appointment came shortly after Lionel Messi signed a new deal with the club, which reportedly takes his net annual salary to $27.4 million.

Messi agreed the deal last Friday but put pen to paper on the new contract Monday.

The Argentina striker has had a lean season by his own impossibly high standards, but has still scored 28 La Liga goals in his 30 games.

Messi joined the Catalans in 2000 at the age of 13 and has gone on to win 21 trophies with Barca, including six La Liga titles and three European Champions League crowns.

The 26-year was also voted World Player of the Year in four successive seasons, between 2009 and 2012, and will be one of the biggest names at the World Cup in Brazil.

Barcelona has also announced the signing of Borussia Mönchengladbach goalkeeper Marc-André Ter Stegen, who is expected to become the club's first-choice next season.

Part of complete coverage on
updated 7:51 AM EDT, Fri August 15, 2014
Last season Jose Mourinho wrote off the title of hopes of his "little horse" -- but now he has a squad primed to dethrone Manchester City.
updated 2:58 PM EDT, Thu August 14, 2014
Luis Suarez will have to wait until late October to make his competitive Barcelona debut his ban for biting an opponent was partially upheld.
updated 12:49 PM EDT, Thu August 14, 2014
Can Louis van Gaal cut it at Manchester United? Will Bayern conquer all in Germany? Is this PSG's year to win the Champions League?
updated 6:12 AM EDT, Thu August 7, 2014
It's been a difficult year for Barcelona on and off the pitch, and the signing of Luis Suarez has only increased the prospect of more controversy.
updated 10:35 AM EDT, Mon August 11, 2014
Germany striker Miroslav Klose, who scored a total of 16 goals at four World Cup finals, has announced his retirement from international football.
updated 7:45 AM EDT, Thu July 31, 2014
Cultural y Deportivo Leonesa line up in their tuxedo kit.
When celebrating an important anniversary, it's always good to look your best. At least that's theory for a Spanish football team's preseason tuxedo kit.
updated 7:03 AM EDT, Wed July 30, 2014
While many top European clubs are targeting the U.S. market, French football is setting its sights on expanding into Asia -- with China playing a key role.
updated 8:29 AM EDT, Sun July 27, 2014
Major League Soccer has snared another big name from England with former Chelsea star Frank Lampard committing his future to New York City FC.
updated 12:56 PM EDT, Wed July 23, 2014
Europe's top clubs have booked a summer holiday to the U.S. -- but this is business not pleasure as they look to cash in on the World Cup afterglow.
updated 2:28 PM EDT, Tue July 22, 2014
Brazil's new coach Dunga won the World Cup as a player in 1994.
Former World Cup-winning captain Dunga is appointed coach of Brazil's national team for the second time, charged with restoring national pride.
updated 10:20 AM EDT, Tue July 22, 2014
Colombia's World Cup star James Rodriguez continues Real Madrid's long tradition of signing "Galacticos."
updated 6:07 AM EDT, Mon July 21, 2014
Germany's World Cup-winning captain Philipp Lahm has decided to go out at the top by announcing his retirement from international football.