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Xavi: "Now is not the time to return to Barcelona"

Xavi: "Now is not the time to return to Barcelona"

INDRANIL MUKHERJEE

AFP

The former Camp Nou captain is about to hang up his boots and embark on a coaching career but has ruled out an immediate return to Barça.

Former Barcelona captain Xavi Hernández has stated that he is not eyeing up an immediate return to his former club after hanging up his playing boots at the end of the current season.

No player has more appearances for Barça than the 39-year-old, who will end the season with Al Saad and then take his first steps into management. Xavi’s side lost the Emir Cup 4-1 against Al-Duhail on Thursday and the AFC Champions League game against Persopolis will be his last as a professional footballer, with Xavi to take up a coaching role with the Qatari club. The World Cup-winner had also been touted as a possible coach of the national side ahead of the 2022 tournament in Qatar, but the position of Félix Sánchez has been made extremely secure by the Spaniard leading the Maroons to Asian Cup glory earlier this year.

Xavi: "Barça is a really big deal"

“It’s not a case of raising my hand and going back to Barcelona. Barça is a really big deal. I’ll have to take it step by step. Obviously it’s an objective of mine to enjoy a return to Can Barça, but I need to make sure I’m ready for it. Now is not the time,” Xavi said in an interview with TV3 after the cup final.