Ronald Koeman says Barcelona future “not in my hands” after 3-0 beating from Benfica

Ronald Koeman insists his stint in the saddle as Barcelona manager is not in his hands after Benfica humbled the Catalan giants 3-0 in the Champion League on Wednesday.

It took three minutes for Barcelona to go a goal down. Benfica carved through their defence like hot butter, with Eric Garcia badly exposed.

Darwin Nunez then stepped up to deliver the crucial blow and make it 1-0.

Things got worse in the second half; Rafa Silva doubled Benfica’s advantage in the 69th minute before Nunez scored his second and Benfica’s third in the 79th.

Garcia then saw red in the 87th to compound Barcelona’s misery.

“The final result is hard to accept,” Koeman said post-match in comments carried by Marca.

“It’s not the result we saw on the pitch. Despite going behind fast, I think the team played well until it went to 2-0. We had clear opportunities to score.

“I’m not going to discuss the level of this team,” he continued.

“Everyone knows what Barcelona’s problem is today. It’s not possible to comment on a team that’s not the one of past years. For me it’s clearer than water.”

Barcelona sit sixth in La Liga and have endured a mixed start to the season. They’ve struggled to kickstart their new era having lost Lionel Messi to Paris Saint-Germain.

After this result, even the most ardent of Koeman supporters would concede that his days at the club are numbered. Things have gone too far.

He was reluctant to discuss his future. “I can only comment on my work with the team,” he said.

“I feel supported by my players and the attitude [they’ve shown me]. I don’t know about the rest. I don’t know about the club. I can’t say anything about my future because I don’t know how the club thinks in that sense. I don’t want to answer any more questions about this because it’s not in my hands. We’ll see.”

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