Barcelona boss Ronald Koeman has insisted he is in good health and told his followers “don’t believe anything you hear” in a social media post.
Club president Joan Laporta said in a news conference earlier on Friday that Koeman had given the club “a scare” this week.
It came after the 58-year-old, who had a heart procedure last year, visited hospital, with conflicting reports over whether the trip was routine or related to anxiety.
Koeman attempted to clarify the situation on Twitter, writing: “Don’t believe anything you hear. I am healthy, that’s all that matters in life!”
— Ronald Koeman (@RonaldKoeman) May 28, 2021
The comments come at an uncertain time for Koeman, who has one year left on his contract at Camp Nou but is under pressure to keep his job.
Laporta has held initial talks with the Dutchman and his agent and is set to hold a further round of discussions in the near future after the head coach finished his first campaign in charge.
The president is said to have asked him to wait for a verdict while he looked at alternative options to fill the role.
Laporta faced questions at a news conference after speculation he would look to pursue Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola after the Champions League final.
Former Barca player Xavi, currently in charge of Al Sadd in Qatar, has also been heavily linked with the job.
“Ronald has a contract and that gives him peace of mind that he should not be rushed into a decision,” Laporta said. “We spoke calmly with him.
“He had an episode that took him to hospital and he routinely gets checked up. He gave us a scare, especially thinking that a year ago he had a heart attack. I told him to take it easy.
“We spoke with respect. We will sit down with Ronald next week and we will decide after outlining all the aspects.
“Out of respect we owe Koeman, he has a current contract and don’t rule it out [that he stays]. We are talking.
“We [the new board] arrived halfway through the season and said we would give our evaluation of the coach at the end of the season and communicate our decisions then.
“We’ve always worked with the maximum respect for Ronald Koeman. Of course, the admiration we have for him as the player who won us the European Cup at Wembley, and he still has a contract in place.
“At the end of the season we will evaluate his time here and make decisions accordingly. We spoke to Koeman and will continue to do so when making important decisions.”
Adding to the complexity of the situation, Koeman’s agent Rob Jansen – via his own Twitter account and that of agency Wasserman – appeared to hit out at Laporta.
“Imagine: I want to marry you, but I have doubts,” he posted. “Give me two weeks to find a better partner. If I can’t find the right person, we will get married anyway!”
A statement from Wasserman added: “The words of FC Barcelona’s president Joan Laporta during a press conference today about Ronald Koeman’s anxiety attack are overdone.
“Ronald has been to the hospital for blood pressure checks, a routine check for people with his medical history. We regret the way it got into the media. Ronald is fine, there is nothing to worry about.”
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