Spanish giants Barcelona have announced the departure of sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta after terminating his contract on Monday.
The 53-year-old, who took up the role in 2010, played for Barcelona between 1986 and 1994, appearing more than 300 times for the Blaugranas.
The swift action follows the team’s defeat in the first game of the new year against Real Sociedad but there is also a good argument for Barcelona not needing a sporting director after losing an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport last week against a transfer ban for breaching rules on signing young players.
The Catalans, who will not be able to sign any new players until January 2016, are currently sitting second in la Liga, one point behind arch-rivals Real Madrid.
Lionel Messi’s team-mates will next lock horns with Elche in their Copa del Rey Round of 16 clash at the Camp Nou on Thursday.