His coaching career did not begin
well. In 2003, he was appointed at Palafrugell, a team in the fourth tier of
Spanish football, and they were relegated to the Primera Catalana division. But
he plugged away, and his big break came when, in 2007, he was given the job of
assistant manager of the Barcelona B team under Pep Guardiola. The following
year, Guardiola and Vilanova were moved up to run the Barcelona first team and,
in their first season in charge, they won the treble of the Primera Division,
the Copa del Rey, and the UEFA Champions League, a feat no other Spanish team
has achieved before or since.
In November 2011, Vilanova was
diagnosed with cancer, and a tumor was removed from his throat. He seemed to
make good progress after that.
When Guardiola left Barcelona in the
summer of 2012, Vilanova was promoted to the manager’s job but, halfway through
his first season, the cancer returned. He took a ten-week break for chemotherapy
and radiotherapy, and returned to work in March 2013, in time to see Barcelona
win La Liga title again, losing only two league matches all season. In July
2013, Vilanova announced that he would have to stand down as manager of
Barcelona, and he died on April 25, 2014, at the age of 45.
Allezblancs, Bill Schenley, Deceased
Hose, Dianagram, and Keister Button kept their eyes on the ball and scored 18