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Barcelona ‘offer club legend Xavi two-and-a-half year contract’ to take over as manager

Barcelona ‘offer club legend Xavi two-and-a-half year contract’ to take over as manager

Barcelona have offered club legend Xavi a two-and-a-half year contract to replace under-fire Ernesto Valverde as manager, according to reports.

The club’s sporting director Eric Abidal and CEO Oscar Grau reportedly linked up with the former midfielder in Doha this week following Barca’s Spanish Super Cup defeat by Atletico Madrid in Saudi Arabia.

AS has reported that the two-hour meeting was enough to convince the club’s chiefs to offer the Spaniard a deal to take over as boss at the Nou Camp, beating off the likes of Ronald Koeman, Roberto Martinez and Thierry Henry to the post.

However, Al-Sadd, the Qatari club where Xavi is currently head coach, have insisted that there is no immediate prospect of their man leaving, before stressing that Barcelona have not made contact with the club.

General manager Turk Al-Ali said the rumoured links are unsurprising but that full focus remains on the club’s league campaign.

‘The issue of Xavi going to Barcelona is normal and expected because he will be at his club and it’s his first home and he must return there in the future, but as of today, Xavi is the coach of Al Sadd,’ a statement from Al-Ali read on the club’s website.

‘Xavi and his team are focusing on tomorrow’s match against Al-Rayyan, and we know that a club with the size and professionalism of Barcelona will take to official channels to speak of such matters.’

The Spaniard would follow in the footsteps of the likes of Pep Guardiola and Luis Enrique in taking over the Catalan club he represented as a player.

Should Xavi become Barcelona boss, he may face a tough task in replicating the performances he produced on the field in winning eight La Liga titles, four Champions Leagues and a glut of other silverware.

On the international stage, Xavi’s 133 caps for Spain resulted in one World Cup win and two European Championship triumphs.

About Femi Ige