Facing criticism for his lack of confidence in the academy, Ernesto Valverde came out fighting and had no problem using the term "demagogy" to label some questions about his faith in Barcelona's youngsters. Valverde has every right to defend himself in press conferences, but he would also to do well to defend himself on the pitch with his decisions. If he counted on the academy, no-one would ask these questions.
Is he going to be another coach who suffers from the syndrome of believing he's persecuted by the press? It's something that we have already experienced a few times when coaches are tempted to avoid self-criticism.
However, under the academy debate, the coach hid another message about the signing of Jeison Murillo. "With 100 million euros, it would have been different." It's the first time that Valverde's insinuated economic difficulties at the club or, at least, restrictions when it comes to signing. It's also the first time he's made it clear that this signing (a loan until the end of the season) was not his first option and, even though that was already public, it's not the same as him offering it himnself openly.
The coach's words are more than a mere complaint. They are an unequivocal message to the club to distribute responsibilities. Valverde made it clear that he went to the market limited, with few options. In the background is Ivan Rakitic's failed transfer to PSG in the summer, but now it's come back like a 'boomerang' to haunt Valverde. The club argued that 100 million euros he wants now would be available if he hadn't blocked the transfer of the Croatian. It's those 100 million euros which may end up conditioning Valverde's future.