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Barcelona coach Vilanova to return to Spain this week

Vilanova will this week leave the city of skyscrapers to return to the Catalan capital, Barcelona announce

Reuters, Monday 25 Mar 2013
FC Barcelona
FC Barcelona's coach Tito Vilanova (Photo: AP)
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Barcelona coach Tito Vilanova will return to Spain this week after two months of cancer treatment in New York, the La Liga club said on Monday.

"Tito Vilanova will this week leave the city of skyscrapers to return to the Catalan capital," Barca said in a statement on their website. The club did not say whether he would be well enough to return to work.

The 44-year-old former Barca player needed a second round of surgery in December following an initial operation to remove a tumour from his saliva glands in November 2011.

His assistant Jordi Roura took charge while he relocated to New York for a course of chemotherapy and radiotherapy.

Barca stuttered in Vilanova's absence and they were eliminated from the King's Cup and beaten in La Liga by arch-rivals Real Madrid.

However, they managed a stirring comeback against AC Milan to secure a place in the Champions League quarter-finals and are 13 points clear of Real in La Liga with 10 games left.

Barca's next match is at Celta Vigo on Saturday and they play at Paris St Germain in their Champions League last eight, first leg on April 2.

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