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Luis Enrique promises 'new era' at Barcelona

Updated: Wednesday, 21 May 2014 16:43 | Comments

Luis Enrique has pledged to build a 'new era' at the Camp Nou
Luis Enrique has pledged to build a 'new era' at the Camp Nou

Luis Enrique has set his sights on building a new Barcelona empire.

The new Camp Nou head coach put pen to paper on his two-year deal on Wednesday afternoon after taking over from Gerardo Martino.

The former Barcelona midfielder, who spent eight years at the club as a player, is looking forward to the challenge of bringing the sort of success back to the club that they enjoyed under his former team-mate Pep Guardiola.

"I am aware of the responsibility and the difficulty of the job, but I can't wait to hear the Barca anthem and enjoy the feeling," he said at his official unveiling.

"This is a very special day. We are beginning the building of a new, exciting Barca."

Martino, who lasted just a season at Barca and failed to win a significant trophy, was criticised for a perceived one-dimensional style of play, which clashed with the total football they had played under Guardiola and Tito Vilanova.

And Luis Enrique was clear on his playing philosophy.
"My team will attack. We'll play attractive and effective football - the kind of football that millions across the world have come to love, which means we need to defend well too," he said.

"I'll be laying out my plans to the players and talking to them so that they take them on board as their own. I don't think I'll need to impose very much and bark out orders. We're in this together, though I'll be demanding hard work.

"The best thing is enjoying the training sessions and this lovely job we have, getting something out of each day we are at work. I'll be looking for plenty of hunger from the players and they'll have to show me that every day."

Luis Enrique moved to Barca following a single season at Celta Vigo and said he would be able to keep the big personalities at the Nou Camp in check.

"A manager is a leader," he said. "He has to know how to deal with a group, to control their egos, to motivate them. And I believe I can do all that and many more positive things for this team. That's the challenge I have ahead of me now."

On potential arrivals and departures, Luis Enrique would only say: "We'll try to strengthen ourselves in every position as well as we can, to make us competitive and to get everyone feeling excited about what we can do. This very afternoon we'll start pooling our ideas together."

Barca have already brought in goalkeeper Marc Andre ter Stegen from Borussia Monchengladbach.

Sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta backed Luis Enrique to be a success, saying: "He knows our philosophy and we believe he's fully capable. He's the kind of person who likes to take on difficult challenges and who has plenty of energy."

Club president Josep Maria Bartomeu greeted the new boss, adding: "He is capable and hard-working and gives us reason to feel optimistic and positive."

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