Barcelona waiting for Xavi’s ‘final decision’ over leaving the club – Joan Laporta

Barcelona president Joan Laporta wants Xavi to stay on as head coach and won’t pursue other options until he makes his “final decision”.

Former midfielder Xavi, 44, made public his intention to leave the club at the end of the season earlier this year.

Speculation has persisted that he may change his mind, however, with suggestions only growing stronger in recent weeks amid an upturn in form.

Laporta has been consistent in wanting the former club captain to stay and has communicated that position to Xavi himself.

“Yes, absolutely. He already knows. I’d like him to stay,” he said in an interview with Mundo Deportivo.

“He keeps saying he’ll leave in June, but we’ll see. We don’t want to put this pressure on ourselves to make a decision for ourselves because the way things are going is working for us now.”

Barcelona won La Liga in Xavi’s first full season in charge (Gongora/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Xavi’s side are unbeaten in their last 10 games in all competitions including a Champions League last-16 aggregate win over Napoli to secure a place in the quarter-finals where they will now face Paris Saint-Germain.

The 3-0 victory over Atletico Madrid on Sunday also moved them second in La Liga behind rivals Real Madrid, who are eight points ahead at the top.

The club have been linked with a number of new managers with Laporta admitting to holding talks with the representatives of former Bayern Munich head coach Hansi Flick.

But he says any call on a potential successor will have to wait until Xavi makes what he describes as his “final decision”.

“Any manager who comes will need to adapt to our structure,” Laporta added of the type of coach he would be looking for. “Barca is above managers, players, presidents or executives. Everyone. We have created a successful model and the manager will need to adapt.

“Whoever might come, will need to wait until the end of the season because we are not touching anything until Xavi makes his final decision.”

Barcelona return to action against Las Palmas on March 30 following the international break.

Xavi will be banned from the touchline for that game after his red card against Atletico. He will also miss the La Liga meeting with Cadiz a fortnight later.



Xavi’s Barcelona 2.0: Fringe players have fans dreaming

(David Ramos/Getty Images)

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