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Xavi: I turned down Barcelona job because it came too soon

Xavi Hernández has explained his decision to reject Barcelona's offer to replace Ernesto Valverde as their head coach.

El entrenador español del Al Sadd, Xavi Hernández, durante un partido.
Eddy KeleleDiario AS

Barcelona midfield legend Xavi Hernández has said he turned down the chance to replace Ernesto Valverde as Blaugrana boss because the opportunity came "too soon" in his coaching career.

"Still my dream to coach Barcelona one day"

"It's true that I received an offer from Barcelona," the Al Sadd head coach, 39, told his pre-match press conference ahead of Friday's Qatar Cup final against Al Duhail.

"[Barça directors] Éric Abidal and Óscar Grau made the offer, but I didn't accept it because I felt it was too soon for me to coach Barcelona. That doesn't mean it's not still my dream to coach Barcelona one day."

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Xavi praises new Barcelona boss Setién

Asked about Quique Setién, who was announced as Barça's new coach on Monday, Xavi said: "I'm really pleased to see Setién in charge of Barcelona. I really like the way he works and I wish him all the success in the world."