Xavi reflects on his first year as a Barça coach

Xavi reflects on his first year as a Barça coach


The Spaniard is well aware that his future hinges on titles, but he is confident of winning this season.

Xavi has probably experienced some of the most intense months of his life. A year ago he made his debut on the Barça bench, fulfilling a dream.

A poisoned gift, because he took charge of a post-Messi Barça: a depressed team with seemingly lesser talent than in previous seasons. He was the last great hope of rescuing the common philosophy of Cruyff and Guardiola. 

Xavi had been chasing the Barça bench for a long time. He wanted to choose the right moment and on his terms, which did not include a spell in the reserve team.

The opportunity came at the height of the crisis.

Xavi was not the obvious choice, having said no to Bartomeu months before and given Laporta's reservations due to Xavi's inexperience in elite coaching. In the end, Xavi was chosen for two reasons: firstly, Laporta needed a catalyst. And secondly, they sat down and had long conversations.

Laporta saw first-hand Xavi's ambition and enthusiasm. Also his optimism, an aspect of the coach's temperament that Laporta particularly likes. But, above all, he had a plan for the team that involved a radical commitment to a style that Laporta felt was being diluted with the team in Koeman's hands.

Xavi's commitment went beyond football. He put up money from his pocket to pay Al-Sadd's exit clause because Barça suffered from financial fair play regulations.

The crisis point

In Xavi's account of his first months, there is a point that sparked the planning for the past summer. The coach highlights the influence of the winter signings and the team's reaction, which had its high point in the victory at the Bernabéu. But he also points out that the team, from that moment onwards, physically slumped and sank. Losing in the Europa League contributed to the team's downturn.

After what happened, Xavi drew his conclusions and the message was clear: the squad needed a revamp and reinforcements. The club, and the sporting management, agreed on the diagnosis and all the signings he asked for arrived, with two exceptions: Azpilicueta and Bernardo Silva.

After a few months, and despite the Champions League setback, Xavi's message to Laporta has been clear: he is convinced that titles will be won this season, especially the big one: LaLiga.

Xavi is very happy with the team's reaction after the tragic week (the defeats against Inter and Madrid) and believes that, once the injured players recover, the team will leap bounce back and sustain that until the end of the season.

He now plans to travel to Qatar to disconnect and enjoy the World Cup and then return to training on the 5th.

Xavi has a clear objective: he believes that if he does not win titles he will not continue, but he is convinced that they will win this season.

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