Xavi makes a bold claim on Lionel Messi of Barcelona
Former Barcelona legend and current Al Sadd manager, Xavi Hernandez, has made the headlines in football for the past months on several occasions. The former Spanish midfielder was heavily linked with a return to the Camp Nou after Ernesto Valverde was sacked mid-campaign, however, the Blaugrana appointed Quique Setien ahead of Xavi as the current Al Sadd manager was not prepared to take over mid-way.
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Quique Setien’s short tenure has sparked controversies as several believe the former Real Betis manager is not worthy to be the head coach of the Catalan club. Xavi Hernandez was once again tipped to take over Barca after the club handed over the Spanish league title to arch-rivals Real Madrid after dropping several points during the business end of the season.
However, Xavi once again turned down the opportunity of taking over Barca as the Spaniard signed a contract extension with Al Sadd. Despite signing a contract extension with Al Sadd, Xavi has stated that his ultimate goal is to coach his former side and according to Eldes marque, the former Barca player claimed that Messi will play in Qatar.
Xavi praises Messi’s physicality and development over the years
The 40-year-old manager stated that he sees Lionel Messi playing until the player wishes to. The Al Sadd manager went on to praise Messi by describing him as a physical beast and that Messi will play in the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar.
However, Xavi is not wrong as Leo Messi has very elegantly and technically evolved his game with age. The 33-year-old is often found walking most of the time on the pitch as conserves his energy to make darting runs with the ball or make runs behind the defence. Messi has also transformed into a winger that drops back towards the centre of the midfield and helps in the distribution of the ball.
Lionel Messi’s 21 assists this season speak highly of how the Argentine has transformed his game into a playmaker. Given Messi’s current playstyle the captain of Barca could play for several more years as Xavi claimed.
The 2022 World Cup, however, would be Leo Messi’s last shot at winning an international trophy for his nation after losing several finals including the 2014 World Cup to Germany.