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Xavi stands by decision to leave Barcelona this summer

Xavi stands by decision to leave Barcelona this summer
© Reuters
Barcelona head coach Xavi insists that he has made the right decision to step down from his role at the end of the season despite the club's recent upturn in form.

Xavi has insisted that he has made the correct decision to leave his position as Barcelona head coach at the end of the season.

The 44-year-old has spent over two years in the Barcelona hotseat after being appointed as Ronald Koeman's successor in November 2021.

Xavi oversaw a successful 2022-23 season, leading the Catalan giants to the league title as well as the Spanish Super Cup.

However, the current campaign has proven to be a challenging one, with Xavi facing scrutiny following some underwhelming performances.

Matters ultimately came to a head last month when Barcelona lost 4-1 to Real Madrid in the Spanish Super Cup final, before they lost to Athletic Bilbao in the Copa del Rey quarter-finals 10 days later.

Barcelona coach Xavi on February 21, 2024© Reuters

After following their cup exit with a 5-3 defeat against Villarreal, Xavi revealed that he would step down as Barcelona manager when his contract expires in June.

However, since making the announcement, Barcelona have gone on to enjoy a six-game unbeaten run in all competitions.

Xavi watched his side ease to a 4-0 win over Getafe on Saturday, with Raphinha, Joao Felix, Frenkie de Jong and Fermin Lopez all getting on the scoresheet to move Barcelona into second position.

Following the comprehensive victory, Xavi was asked whether he had any regrets over his decision to leave at the end of the campaign.

"No, the opposite," Xavi told reporters. "I think it is absolutely the correct call. The team have stepped forward since I made it and the players have shown level they have [against Getafe] and in previous games.

Barcelona coach Xavi before the match on December 10, 2023© Reuters

"I am really grateful the fans chant my name, but I am convinced my decision is the correct one for the club. The fans have always been on my side and, from the heart, I really appreciate it."

Although Barcelona are currently five points adrift of Real Madrid, that gap could move back to eight points if Los Blancos beat Sevilla on Sunday evening.

Xavi's side are also one point better off than Girona, who will have the chance to reclaim second spot when they face Rayo Vallecano on Monday.

Barcelona will now turn their attention to next Sunday's tricky meeting with top-four hopefuls Athletic Bilbao at San Mames.

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1Real Madrid30236166204675
4Atletico MadridAtletico30184856352158
5Athletic Bilbao30168650282256
6Real Sociedad301310743311249
7Real BetisBetis31111283837145
12Las PalmasLas Palmas30107132933-437
16Rayo Vallecano30612122538-1330
17Celta Vigo31610153346-1328

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