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Barcelona replaces Tito Vilanova with Gerardo Martino

Gerardo Martino is taking over as Barcelona's new coach (Juan Mabromata/AFP) Gerardo Martino is taking over as Barcelona's new head coach. (Juan Mabromata/AFP)

Barcelona is replacing Tito Vilanova, who stepped down as head coach Friday to seek treatment for throat cancer, with Gerardo Martino, the club announced Tuesday.

Martino coached Newell's Old Boys last season and took Paraguay to the World Cup quarterfinals in 2010. He hasn't coached a European club, but he recently received support from fellow Argentine Lionel Messi.

"He is a great coach … his teams play well and we all respect him," Messi said recently, according to the Associated Press. Martino, 50, will be the fourth Argentine to coach Barcelona.

Barcelona plays Bayern Munich in Germany on Wednesday for a preseason friendly, but Martino won't be coaching, the club said.