Sunday, May 29, 2022

Xavi is the right man to bring Barcelona back to the top, says club legend Albert Ferrer

ALBERT FERRER believes Xavi is capable of bringing the glory days back to Barcelona. 

The Barca legend has had an instant impact at the club since taking over from Ronald Koeman in November. 

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Barcelona have gone from 9th to 2nd in La Liga since Xavi took over from Ronald Koeman in NovemberCredit: AFP
La Liga TV expert Albert Ferrer played over 200 games for Barcelona between 1990-98

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La Liga TV expert Albert Ferrer played over 200 games for Barcelona between 1990-98Credit: Getty

A 15-game winning streak saw the Catalan giants go from ninth to second in La Liga as Xavi brought a feel-good factor back to the club. 

Thrashing Real Madrid 4-0 at the Bernabeu last month left Barca fans in dreamland as they felt the good times were making a comeback at the Nou Camp. 

But in the last week, Barca have been brought back down to Earth after crashing out of the Europa League to Frankfurt before a 1-0 defeat to relegation-threatened Cadiz on Monday. 

Despite the setback, former Barca defender Ferrer believes Xavi is the right man for the job. 

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The La Liga TV expert said: “He’s the right man to do it. 

“He has come from the academy and he gives confidence and minutes to the youngsters like Gavi or Pedri who he has made the leader of the teams. 

“There were some doubts when Xavi was appointed because of his lack of experience in the top picks but it is his experience playing for Barcelona. 

“He understands the youngsters that they want to succeed at Barcelona because he did too.” 

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Xavi made over 500 appearances for Barcelona, winning eight La Liga titles and four Champions League trophies during his 17 years at the club. 

His most famous period was under Pep Guardiola between 2008-2012 where Xavi formed a formidable partnership with Andres Iniesta and Lionel Messi. 

As a manager, the former midfielder has put faith in academy products Pedri, 19, and 17-year-old Gavi while also playing Ansu Fati when fit. 

And Ferrer believes the Barca boss has the foundations to build a side which can be at the top of European football for the next decade. 

Albert Ferrer is a La Liga TV expert

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Albert Ferrer is a La Liga TV expert

Ferrer, who featured over 200 times for Barcelona between 1990-98, added: “When you play in the middle of the park and all the balls come to you, it is much easier to understand what the team needs. 

“It is similar to Pep Guardiola when he was at Barca.

“ All the attacking moments of the team went through five influential players – with Xavi it is almost the same. 

“Seventy to eighty per cent of the first 11 are youngsters, they can grow from that. 

“If Xavi does well and things are good – they have a team between five and ten seasons.” 

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has netted ten goals for Barcelona since signing from Arsenal in January

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Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has netted ten goals for Barcelona since signing from Arsenal in JanuaryCredit: AP

Signing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang at the eleventh hour on deadline day has been key for Xavi dragging the club back into the Champions League places. 

After hitting ten goals already this season, Ferrer added: “Aubameyang has been crucial. 

“Since Luis Suarez left the club, Barcelona needed that number 9 to finish. 

“Aubameyang can be both false 9 and the killer in the box.” 

Don’t miss Albert Ferrer’s analysis on LaLigaTV, the only channel in the UK offering every LIVE match from LaLiga .

Sign up to LaLigaTV with Premier Sports on Sky Ch. 427 / Virgin TV Ch. 554 or via streaming with Amazon Prime Video Channels.

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