Xavi threatens 'to pack his bags' if Barca players no longer follow him

AFP , Wednesday 17 Jan 2024

Under-pressure Barcelona coach Xavi Hernandez said on Wednesday he would resign if his squad no longer believed in him following last weekend's heavy Spanish Super Cup final loss to Real Madrid.

Barcelona's Spanish coach Xavi directs his players during the Spanish Super Cup final football match between Real Madrid and Barcelona at the Al-Awwal Park Stadium in Riyadh, on January 14, 2024. Photo: AFP


Barca were hammered 4-1 by Madrid on Sunday and sit eight points off leaders Girona in the La Liga table.

Defensively the Catalans have struggled this year which is in stark contrast to last season's Liga success.

They have conceded 22 goals at the halfway stage of the league season after shipping only 20 in the whole of the 2022-23 campaign.

"The day my players no longer follow me, I'll pack my bags and leave," Xavi told reporters.

"If I hadn't won La Liga last year I wouldn't be here.

"When someone tells me there's a problem, I'll leave.

"I love this club. I'm here to bring something to it. If I don't do it, I'll go home," the former Barca captain added.

The 43-year-old returned to the Spanish champions in 2021 after a spell as Al Sadd boss with Barca in free fall.

On Thursday they face third-tier Unionistas in the last 16 of the Spanish Cup before playing Napoli in the first leg of the same stage in the Champions League in February.

"When the owners signed me from Qatar, they said it was one of the worst moments in the club's history," Xavi said.

"And we're in the process of changing things.

"I'm calm, I have three titles to win. I think we're closer to success than failure," the ex-midfielder added.

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