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Xavi in for year of transition at FC Barcelona after cup failure


I look at Xavi like those who years ago tried to start their bike over and over again, kicking the starter pedal. Old bikes were sometimes slow to respond. Sometimes the kick didn't make any impact. On other occasions, it made a promising start, after the bike rider tried to kick-start it with the throttle, but it died soon after. After insisting, it would eventually start, flooding the area with smoke and noise, and the owner would happily disappear down the street in search of his girlfriend. That's how I picture Xavi at Barcelona, kicking the starter pedal over and over again, showing signs of promise, before fading out.

The glory days

It seemed crazy for Xavi to accept the Camp Nou job in the first place, but he did it out of culé patriotism and an a total belief in the Barça model, with a style of play made in the club's underage academy. With this model, Barça recently achieved resounding success and were at the forefront of global football. That model was implemented so successfully with Pep Guardiola at the helm, and carried out by Xavi, Andrés Iniesta and Lionel Messi on the field. Eight other players also played their part, four of whom still remain but are not the same as in those glory days. Time has passed them by. The formula is the same, but the ingredients are not. Xavi is facing reality but he has no choice but to insist.

Year of transition for Barcelona

LaLiga is gone, the Super Cup is gone, and the Copa del Rey is also gone. Barcelona are still in the Europa League and the minimum objective is fourth place in LaLiga, which they are closer to now than they were with former boss Ronald Koeman. For many, Xavi is doing less than people initially expected when he arrived, but the recipe is not a magic wand. The Barça model remains, however, the players at Xavi's disposal are either too old or too young. Patience is key in this new project and we have to admit that yes, this will be a year of transition.


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