Spanish midfield legend calls his time on his decorated career at FC Barcelona as he is set to join Qatari side Al Sadd. Now 35 years old, Xavi joined Barca aged 11 and has been a regular part of the first team since 1998, winning eight La Liga titles, two Copa del Rey, two club world cups and three Champions League titles. A 4th Champions League title may be on its way on June 6th.
A true great of the modern game, Xavi also played a key role for Spain as they won three consecutive major titles between 2008 and 2012—two European Championships and the 2010 World Cup.
Xavi is identifiable with arguably the greatest eras in both Barcelona and Spain’s footballing history and leaves Camp Nou a bona fide legend. His ability to dictate the pace is unmatched by almost any other player, and he will no doubt be hugely missed in Catalonia.He was one of the most fundamental parts of the golden period of the Pep Guardiola’s tenure at the Camp Nou where they were able to win a total of ’14’ trophies out of a possible 18. He was the engine of the Barcelona attack,and the midfield trio of Xavi, Iniesta and Messi was one of the biggest reasons of the success the club achieved during that period-The ‘Tiki Taka’ period.
Although now with Luis Enrique being in charge of the club,the focus of the attack has shifted from the midfield to our three deadly forwards -Lionel Messi,Luis Suarez and Neymar with a more direct approach being inducted into the Barca system with the likes of Rakitic and Rafinha pulling the strings in the midfield. Iniesta is still there but he hasn’t been like his magical self since the start of this transition phase in the Barca system.
However, Xavi has seemingly timed his departure to perfection, leaving in what could be a treble-winning season for Barca. The treble would be a perfect send off to this maestro who is almost like an emblem to this great club.