Sport Soccer-Laporta plans to announce changes at Barcelona
Street parties celebrate end of Spain's state of emergency
BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — Impromptu street celebrations erupted across Spain as the clock struck midnight on Saturday, when a six-month-long national state of emergency to contain the spread of coronavirus ended and many nighttime curfews were lifted. In Madrid, police had to usher revelers out of the central Puerta del Sol square, where the scenes of unmasked dancing and group signing esembled pre-pandemic nightlife. Teenagers and young adultsIn Madrid, police had to usher revelers out of the central Puerta del Sol square, where the scenes of unmasked dancing and group signing esembled pre-pandemic nightlife.
BARCELONA (Reuters) - Barcelona president Joan Laporta has said changes are imminent at the club as they approach the end of a disappointing season.
Barca can at best finish third in La Liga this term, having seen their former forward Luis Suarez fire Atletico Madrid towards the title while they have toiled for large parts of the campaign with arch rivals Real Madrid also above them.
They won the Copa del Rey but were knocked out of the Champions League in the last 16 by Paris St-Germain.
Coach Ronald Koeman's future has been up for debate in recent weeks, with the club's revered former midfielder Xavi Hernandez heavily linked to the post.
Koeman angered by criticism after Barca talks offer few assurances
Ronald Koeman raised a passionate defence of the job he has done as Barcelona coach on Saturday, amid speculation the Dutchman will not be in charge next season. Barca sold Luis Suarez at the start of the season to Atletico Madrid and the Uruguayan has been key to Atletico's own title charge.Koeman confirmed he met with the club's president Joan Laporta this week but was unable to say he was given assurances about his future.
Speaking at a Catalan Sports Festival, Laporta, who returned for a second spell in charge at the Camp Nou in March, said that decisions on the future will be made shortly.
"I said I'd review things with the team at the end of the season, in terms of how they played and the results," he said.
"We won the Copa del Rey and are very proud of that, but we were knocked out of the Champions League very early on and threw away the league in an incomprehensible way in my point of view.
"From next week, you'll see a series of decisions taken that need to be made and we'll announce them.
"When I talk about it being the end of a cycle or renewals that are needed it's because I think that's what we need to do."
(Reporting by Joseph Walker; Editing by Ken Ferris)
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