Few months ago, Barca sacked their old coach and appointed their legendary former midfielder, Xavi, as his replacement. Xavi has quite a lot to do, as Barca seems to be in a bit of disarray right now. It’s not clear whether or not they will qualify for the champions league, and their squad is a lot weaker than it was just few years ago. Departure of their biggest star, Lionel Messi has definitely affected the club. In short, Barcelona FC is in a transitional period right now, and this gives Xavi an opportunity to make his mark as a manager. Build a team entirely from ground up and lead for the years to come.
As a footballer, Xavi was free and seemingly uninhibited. People might expect him to be the same type of manager. However, Xavi is different in the managerial role. He is very strict and as soon as he arrived in Barcelona, he outlined guidelines for the players that cover almost all aspects of their life, on the pitch as well as outside of it. These guidelines will affect their training routines, their diets as well as the limitations on what they can and can’t do in their personal life.
These measures might seem overly strict, but Barca’s poor performance on the international stage has demonstrated that changes are necessary. For the past 5 years, the Spanish giant has been battered from clubs all around Europe. Most recently, they even failed to qualify for champions league knock-offs and instead they are playing in Europa league.
Barca’s structure as a team seems to be compromised, and their defenses are rather weak. Top clubs from other countries are able to easily bypass their midfielders and defenders and score many goals. We don’t need to go back further than two years back, when Barca were humiliated by Bayern.
Xavi clearly has the authority and legend status to pull off all the changes he is planning. Still, factors like budget problems and poor physical training are an important contributing factor that might limit his ability to pull it off. As a midfielder with years of experience, Xavi should understand the importance of the mental state of the players. It affects their discipline, their focus on the pitch and their overall performance. Mental state of the players largely depends on events outside of the pitch.
In this process, he should re-evaluate the role of older players like Sergio Busquets, Jordi Alba and Gerard Pique. Xavi knows that football is becoming more and more physical, and the stamina of older players might be a setback for the whole team. Still, Xavi feels like he can utilize their experience by limiting their involvement in Barca games to once per week. Xavi believes that their experience will be invaluable in important games where it’s necessary to get three points or to advance in the next round. Still, for the future, Xavi looks to replace them with younger players who will be physically more capable. Another issue with old players is that they are prone to injuries. The new manager wants to improve the medical department at Barca, so there are less injuries. If you’d like to bet on their future performances, you can do so on the 22Bet website.