Barcelona coach Xavi has announced that he will step down at the end of this season.
He led Barca to the Spanish title in his first season in charge in 2022-23, but on Saturday 5-3 home defeat by Villarreal It has left them 10 points behind La Liga leaders Real Madrid.
“I have become a man of the club. I have put it before myself. I have given everything I have,” said Xavi.
“And I will continue to do it to make the fans proud.”
The 44-year-old, who won 25 top-flight honors at Barcelona, will step down on June 30 despite still having one year left on his contract.
The 2010 World Cup winner said he made the decision after consulting with Barcelona president Joan Laporta, vice president Rafa Yuste, and director Deco.
“I think the club needs to change,” Xavi said. “For the sake of the players, I hope they will free themselves, we play very hard.
“For the good of the governing body, it’s better for me to leave. I will volunteer. I think all of this will help make a big difference. This is the message I want to give. I think I’m doing the perfect thing.”
Xavi said this month “carrying his bags“If his players lost faith in him following a A 4-1 defeat by Real Madrid players in the Spanish Super Cup.
Barça responded with back-to-back wins, but exited the Copa del Rey with defeat at Athletic Bilbao Wednesday before we slip into the race at Villarreal.
Xavi said that the job was difficult for him and it was time for him to return because of his mental health.
“In Barcelona, you always feel underappreciated, you are abused – that’s how the club works,” he said.
“From a mental health level, it’s difficult. I’m a good person, but the battery levels go on and on – and at some point, you realize there’s no reason to be.”
Xavi also hopes that by announcing his departure now it will “reduce” the situation for the rest of the season, which includes the Champions League last-16 tie against Napoli next month.
“I will not change my decision even if I win the Champions League. I will tell the players tomorrow. I am very reliable, so the players will feel comfortable now,” he said.
“I don’t get carried away with financial issues, but with my heart. I think it’s the best thing for the team.
“I don’t want to be the problem, but the solution, and I believe that between now and June I can be the solution.”
‘I don’t know if they will continue to manage after this’
Reviewed by Spanish football expert Guillem Balague
Xavi is Barcelona’s first and foremost fan and is a keen observer and a keen observer of the club’s situation which he knows well from the inside.
Secondly, he is a manager who prepared himself to be the manager of Barcelona. I don’t see him directing anyone else. I don’t know if they will continue to monitor after this.
So with those two things in hand and after winning the league, it was time for his time at Barcelona. And instead of using his weight to gain more control, the group took that control away from him. So he lost the football manager Jordi Cruyff, he lost the football manager Mateu Alemany and that means he was alone.
Remember, Xavi was not the choice of club president Joan Laporta. Xavi is bringing in another candidate, Victor Font, and after Laporta won the election he saw that the fans wanted an old legend in a time of trouble and confusion to take the team. So he gave him a chance.
They wanted Xavi to have a year or two with the B team, like Pep Guardiola did, but Xavi said no, I just want to be in the first team. Laporta did not believe him at all.
Players should be at a different level after three years of coaching. Individually they look worse than last season and collectively there is no such style. Xavi must decide if it was his failure, or if things were not good enough for him to win.
Because he was so successful as a player he doesn’t need to push to succeed as a manager. If he doesn’t want too much, then maybe he’s not ready for Barcelona. But this is something they will have to look into next time.