Why I turned down Barcelona - Xavi

Tanya Simon
January 16, 2020

Xavi Hernandez has explained why he passed up on the chance for a dream return to Barcelona.

Valverde was sacked in the wake of the 3-2 defeat to Atletico Madrid in the semi-finals of the inaugural expanded Supercopa de Espana, with the writing having been considered to be on the wall for the coach for some time.

"I received an offer from Barcelona through Eric Abidal and Oscar Grau", Xavi admitted.

"It's too early in my coaching career, but my dream is still to be Barcelona coach some day".

"First I told my family and then [the] players because they had been monitoring the situation", Xavi said of his decision to turn down Barca. For three days I was not in my best position but now I am totally focused on Al Sadd'.

After Xavi turned down their advances, Barcelona opted to bring in former Real Betis boss Quique Setién, who penned the same two-and-a-half-year deal that he initially rejected.

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He joined Al-Sadd as a player in 2015 before being appointed coach last July. The 39-year-old is tied to Al-Sadd until June.

But as he has repeatedly stressed on a number of occasions that his ultimate goal is to be back at his beloved Barcelona.

"I love the new Barcelona coach, I love the way he works, and I expect him to succeed with the team".

"The idea is to start as a coach in Qatar, where there is not as much pressure, to test myself and to gain experience, and the objective is to return to Europe and most of all to Barcelona".

A World Cup victor with Spain, Xavi is expected to return to Barcelona one day - but clearly he feels now is not the time.

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