Xavi said it wasn't easy to manage Alba and Busquets' minutes

Xavi said it wasn't easy to manage Alba and Busquets' minutes

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The coach acknowledged it's a tricky line between friendship and being the head honcho

FC Barcelona coach Xavi Hernández explained his feelings about Jordi Alba and his decision to leave the club at the end of the current season despite having one more year on his contract. 

Xavi addressed this and many other current Barça issues in the press conference prior to the match against Real Mallorca that will be the last ever match at Camp Nou as it is today.

In the case of Jordi Alba, as was the case with Piqué and Alves, Xavi explained that seeing Alba leave "is one of the most difficult things, managing friends with whom you have shared so many things. It's difficult to define how far friendship and professionalism go. It happened to me with Piqué and Alves and also with Jordi Alba and Busquets, although the latter is the one who decided not to renew. It hasn't been easy but I'm here to make decisions and the position of coach comes before anything else. I prioritise the club. It's not a personal decision, it's a group decision."

Xavi clarified that he had a long conversation with Jordi Alba "and it was his decision because he had one more year on his contract, we talked a lot and during this year he has always helped us a lot".

This Sunday's Barça-Mallorca game will also be the farewell match for Busquets, who also announced his departure from the club, as well as the last game to be played at the Spotify Camp Nou once the reconstruction work begins in earnest. "What better farewell to the Camp Nou, and add to that the farewell of Busquets and Jordi Alba... I hope we have an excellent farewell, giving our best version of ourselves and offering our best football."

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