The Spanish defender was whistled by fans during the game against Villarreal
After the win over Villarreal, Xavi praised Gerard Pique in the press room. “Playing or not, he’s a great example in the dressing room, never a bad attitude, he’s an example of a captain,” said the coach after the fans whistled him.
Precisely these whistles are an argument for Barcelona to convince the player to leave before the end of his contract, in June 2024. He is one of the best defenders ever to play for the club, maybe the best. Seeing him spoil that image by extending his career would be unedifying.
Joan Laporta and economic vice-president Eduard Romeu want to lower the club’s salary mass from 656 million to 500 in the 2024-25 season. With Busquets leaving next season and Alba and Pique in 2024, that may happen largely naturally. The club’s desire, however, is to accelerate it.
Xavi made it clear that Pique would only play a little and was fifth choice. The defender said he could see off any newcomers and start. Xavi has only used him when players have been injured and he has not played well - see the Inter game for a crucial error.
Pique refused to leave and to reduce his salary, to the club’s fury. They are hoping he accepts a departure at the end of the season, or even in January, although it would be difficult.
Avoiding the whistles, having a good exit from a club where he’s been a reference point, and conserving some of his good image for if he one day wants to be president are all arguments that the club can use to convince Pique to leave before June 2024.
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