Vilanova to resume Barca coaching duties

2013-03-20 14:44

Madrid – Tito Vilanova will resume his coaching duties at Spanish La Liga leaders Barcelona today.

Vilanova has been in New York since January, at the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, receiving radiotherapy and chemotherapy for throat cancer.

His cancer is now in remission and he will be back in charge at Barca from today onwards, according to the Mundo Deportivo paper today.

In his absence, assistant coach Jordi Roura has been in temporary charge, with mixed results.

Barca lost 3-1 to Real Madrid in the semi-finals of the Spanish Cup on February 26 then lost to Real 2-1 in La Liga four days later.

On the other hand, Roura has maintained Barca’s 13-point lead atop La Liga and guided them into the quarterfinals of the Champions League, with a memorable 4-0 destruction of AC Milan on March 12.

“Tito (Vilanova) is fundamental for us, we just can’t wait for him to return. Jordi (Roura) has done an excellent job and we respect him a lot, but Tito is our coach and obviously we want him back with us,” Barca’s Argentine defender Javier Mascherano said.

Barca president Sandro Rosell said last week that Vilanova – who is under contract until June 2014 – will continue as coach next season. He took over from the highly successful Pep Guardiola in June last year, after four years as Guardiola’s assistant.

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