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Monday, 14 June 2021

Xavi aims for perfect send off with Champions League win

Reuters , Sunday 31 May 2015
Barcelona's Andres Iniesta and Xavi lift the trophy after winning the Spanish King's Cup Final (Photo: Reuters)

Barcelona midfielder Xavi raised the King's Cup aloft alongside Andres Iniesta in his final appearance at the Camp Nou on Saturday and now victory in the Champions League would make it a perfect send-off for the club legend.

Xavi became the first Spanish player to win 24 trophies following the 3-1 win over Athletic Bilbao and can still add to that with a victory over Juventus on June 6.

The home-grown talent may have only been a fringe player this season but his trophy haul over 17 years shows his importance to the Catalan club that he will leave at the end of this campaign.

With the La Liga trophy also in the bag, victory in the Champions League final would see Barca equal their treble success of 2009.

"We are now in a position where we can start to make comparisons although there is a long way to go and next Saturday we will see what happens," Xavi told reporters.

"We could equal the historic treble but who knows? I think the coach (Luis Enrique) has rotated the squad well and so we are all fresh which is important.

"We need to be cautious because Juventus also are a great side that have a lot of confidence. They also have a double and we will see how it works out but we want to make history."

Xavi made his debut for Barca under former coach Louis van Gaal and soon became an integral part of the team but it was during a golden spell from 2008 to 2012 under Pep Guardiola, whom he replaced on the pitch as a midfield architect, that he really shone.

"The importance of Xavi in the history of Barca is clear for everyone to see," Luis Enrique told a news conference.

"He has played the most official games and won the most trophies in the history of Barca. He still needs to win the Champions League again and then can retire on the big stage as I think he is doing."

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