The biggest debut La Liga win for a Barcelona manager

For the opening game of the 2008/09 La Liga season, Barcelona traveled to the newly promoted Numancia’s smaller Los Pajaritos ground.

Pep Guardiola’s first league match in charge of Barça pits him against a side in just his fourth season of top-flight football with an annual budget 26 times less than their esteemed visitors.

A 37-year-old Pep Guardiola watches Barcelona take on Neumancia in his first La Liga match as manager / Jasper Juinen/Getty Images

Nevertheless, despite the huge gap in resources, Numancia managed to win 1-0.

However, debuts can be misleading. Guardiola would oversee a period of greatness unmatched in the club’s history and perhaps even in modern European football.

While there are few managers who have enjoyed more success in the Camp Nou hot seat than Guardiola, many have enjoyed a more impressive start to a league campaign, including his former teammates and current incumbents.

Ronald Koeman did not win his first game in charge of his last three managerial spells before taking over at Barcelona / Josep Lago / Getty Images

During the first week on the job, trying to get your team’s mascot and club’s icon out in public and then failing to quit, before landing a few proverbial punches on the establishment hierarchy, is the easiest start-up job. do not have.

However, amid a plethora of experienced players, Koeman was able to control what turned out to be a routine 4-0 win on his league debut. Of course it came against a Villarreal side that offered limp resistance, but there were plenty of early signs of encouragement at this early stage.

Born #OnThisDay in 1918, former Barcelona coach (1964-65) Vicente Sasot.

— Barça OTD (@barcaotd) January 21, 2014

A year after Koeman’s birth, Vicente Sasot showed that a healthy debut win does not always precede a long and successful career as Barcelona manager.

Sasot succeeded César Rodriguez in October 1964. After defeating Athletic Club, the former Sabadell player could only lead Barcelona to a mid-table finish – coincidentally, the campaign ended with the same number of points as their Basque opponents.

He left at the end of the season to begin a Nomadic career in Spain’s lower tiers.

Goalkeeper Platko, FC Barcelona, ​​in the 1920s.

— ⚽️ Soccer Nostalgia ?️ (@nostalgiafutbo1) April 13, 2020

As a player, Ferenc Plattkó – also known as Francisco Plattkó in Spain – won the first La Liga title in 1929 as Barcelona’s goalkeeper. Five years later the Hungarian-born Mutoli was appointed manager.

Plattkó’s side started the 1934/35 La Liga campaign with enthusiasm, barely putting aside a 4-0 win at the Arena. However, that form soon faded and they finished the season in mid-table, ten points behind surprise winners Real Betis.

FC Barcelona would like to express its sadness at the news of the death of 1981-83 coach Udo Lattek. RIP

— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) February 4, 2015

In the 1970s, Udo Lattek dominated the German football scene, first with Bayern Munich, then Borussia Mönchengladbach.

After making a Bundesliga switch to Barcelona, ​​Letic guided the Catalan giants to a second-placed finish, their highest league finish for three years, as well as the Cup Winners’ Cup.

Tito Vilanova lost just two league games in his entire single season as manager of Barcelona / LLUIS GENE/Getty Images.

After years of beautiful football and trophy hauls, Guardiola’s tenure as Barcelona manager created a terrifying prospect.

Nevertheless, Tito Villanueva showed little sign of struggle after being promoted from an assistant role in 2012.

Dubbed ‘The Encyclopaedia’ by Andres Iniesta, the man achieved success, remaining unbeaten in the league until they met Sociedad in the reverse fixture in January. Real Madrid descended into a toxic mess in Jose Mourinho’s third and final season, with Barcelona amassing a record 100 points.

However, Villanova’s reign only lasted one season as he resigned due to ill health and tragically passed away the following year at the age of 45.

Joaquim Rifé, a former Barça player (1964-1976), took over the team in April and managed to turn them into champions. Rife selected: Artola, Zoveria, Migueli, El Baladejo, Costas, Niskins, Rexch, Sanchez, Krankel, Asensi and Carrasco.

— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) May 10, 2019

Joaquim ‘Quimet’ Rifé – a former player and Barcelona captain – replaced Lucien Müller in his first managerial role at the back of the 1978/79 season.

A 6–0 scoreline from their first game was made all the more impressive as it came against a Sporting Gijon team that led the league for much of the campaign and eventually finished second.

Rifé lost just one more of his remaining six league matches that season and also guided Barça to victory in the European Cup Winners’ Cup.

One of our greatest coaches was also a legendary player in @slavia_eng. This is the interesting story of Ferdinand Dauk?

— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) October 23, 2019

On 15 June 1950, Ferdinand Dauk became the manager of Barcelona. However, the date remains woven into the fabric of the club’s history as it also marked the day his brother-in-law, the legendary László Kobala, joined Barça.

One of Kobala’s conditions for signing with Barcelona was to hire Davuk. However, the Hungarian coach proved that his appointment was more than just nepotism as he rewarded the club with numerous titles during an incredible period of sustained success between 1950 and 1954 – admittedly his sister. Thanks in no small part to her husband’s goals.

Gerardo Martino has won 13 of his first 14 La Liga games in charge of Barcelona / Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images

Barcelona went unbeaten in the first 20 games of Gerardo Martino’s stewardship but – notably – played a different style of football based on Guardiola’s possession.

Five days after Ajax ended that run, Martino’s first La Liga defeat came at the hands of Athletic Club. A side managed by Ernesto Valverde, Barcelona’s second coach was considered for hire this summer.

This second defeat in 22 matches prompted Spanish paper Sport to run the headline: “This is not our Barca!”

He moved on to Barca – who he belonged to – then slowly saw his lead slip away at the top until Atletico Madrid finally clinched the title at the Camp Nou on the final day of the campaign.

Suffice it to say, Martino didn’t make it to the next season.

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