Managerial debut date confirmed for Xavi as Barcelona great set to take the reins
Xavi returning home next month
Former Barcelona midfielder and legendary figure Xavi is set to make his return to the club that he called home for over 760-appearances as the Spanish icon is primed to take over the reins at the Camp Nou as the successor to Ronald Koeman.
According to Spanish outlet AS, Xavi will take up his first match in charge of the Blaugrana in a crucial derby clash against Espanyol on 20 November.
(🌕) Everything indicates that Xavi will make his coaching debut at Barça against Espanyol on 20th November. @fansjavimiguel #FCB 🇪🇸
— Reshad Rahman ✆ (@ReshadRahman_) October 30, 2021
Until then, the former Spanish international will remain at his current posting with Qatari outfit Al Sadd.
Additionally, instead of Barcelona having to pay compensation for Xavi leaving his post in Doha before his contract was completed, Al Sadd are prepared to accept a friendly against the Catalunya outfit that must be honored by Barça within the next two years.
Xavi is expected to formally announce his separation from Al Sadd on next week on 4 November before he is expected to fly to Barcelona at the end of the week before being unveiled as the club’s next manager on Sunday at the conclusion of the home match against Celta Vigo, or the following day at the absolute latest.
Is the former Barça midfielder the right man?
Club identity and understanding of culture goes a long way in football management. The likes of Bayern Munich, Ajax Amsterdam, and a host of other continental outfits make a point of hiring managers that mesh with principles and ideologies that have been around long before their appointment.
For Xavi, his upbringing in La Masia and long-term service for the club across 17-years in the heart of the midfield makes him a brilliant addition on the touchline in that light.
However, despite his wealth of success with Al Sadd where he has netted seven pieces of silverware in just two years of management, it is still a very significant jump to go from Qatar to one of the top-two leagues in the world and to one of the biggest clubs on the planet.
At the very least, what Barcelona are – and want to be – on the pitch is sure to be upheld under his tenure. But there must be so much more than understanding of one’s roots if Xavi is to be a true managerial success in Catalunya.