When Ronald Koeman was sacked after the loss against Rayo Vallecano the first replacement option who came into the spotlight was Xavi Hernandez. This is because the former Barcelona player and all-time legend, Xavi, was tipped to be the manager of the club on several occasions and it was even said that Lionel Messi wanted him at the club. However, he was never hired due to his lack of experience as a European manager. This time, however, although the former player still has no experience in Europe, Barca seem to be happy to take a gamble on him. Not only is the former player willing to manage the broken Barca side but the fans will also be happy with the appointment.
However, according to former Arsenal player, Santi Cazorla, Xavi’s appointment will be more than just appeasing the fans. According to the Spaniard, Xavi is a manager who has immense knowledge about the game and knows exactly how he wants the game to be played. The former World Cup winner learnt a lot from Pep Guardiola and his managing style is based upon Barcelona’s golden days back in the late 2000s and early 2010s. On the Spanish radio show, El Larguero, Cazorla said,
"“He has a clear idea of football. He wants the ball and to be the protagonist. He is going to do it in any team in the world that he trains.”“It’s what Barca need, to return to their style.”“Xavi likes a lot of possession. He alternates between 4-3-3 and 3-4-3. Xavi always wants more and more possession.”“Without the ball, we squeeze a lot in the block. He has an idea from the good years at Barca when they pressed very high.”Source Football Espana"
This is true, he loves to have possession of the ball and wants to recreate how fluid and dominant Barca used to playback in the golden days. He has somewhat managed to achieve that with his current club, Al Sadd, and the team went unbeaten last season. Xavi will be able to bring back the spark that was lost within the team and now with Messi gone, Barcelona are in need of a genius, a genius who can save them from becoming a mid-table team.
Do you think Xavi can bring tiki-taka back?