Barcelona midfielder Xavi Hernandez has admitted that he is “unhappy” with the lack of first team opportunities under new manager Luis Enrique. He is considered one of the greatest midfielders in the history of the sport but Xavi has been consistently left out of the starting eleven, with Enrique preferring the Croatian midfield Ivan Rakitic.
Xavi was linked to a move to Manchester United and Qatar earlier in the summer transfer window; however, the Spanish international decided to stay and fight for his spot at Barcelona.
“I am not comfortable as a reserve. I want to play more and change the situation, although the team comes first and it is the coach who decides. I just have to take advantage of the minute given to me. It’s a tragic situation, but I want to reverse it and feel more useful.”
Manchester United’s manager, Louis Van Gaal, is a known admirer of Xavi Hernandez, handing the highly decorated midfielder his professional debut in August 1998. With Xavi expressing his need for first team football and Manchester United’s slow start to the season, many are speculating that a move to Old Trafford may be in the works.
Van Gaal is experiencing a mini-crisis with many senior midfielders and defenders out with various injuries. Against West Ham, Man United had up to nine players missing due to injury, with Ander Herrera and captain Wayne Rooney also unavailable for selection in the upcoming fixtures due to injury and suspension picked up on the weekend.
It is reported that Manchester United are willing to extend their summer spending spree into the January transfer window. Xavi still has two years left on his contract and is still one of the top earners at the club. Barcelona may elect to sell Xavi in January before any devaluation in his market value.
Xavi has only started twice since the beginning of the season. However, the 2010 World Cup winner recently broke the record for most Champions League appearance on Tuesday night when he was brought on for Rakitic against Paris Saint Germaine. Xavi has surpassed Real Madrid legend Raul, who made 142 appearances in the Champions League.
Xavi Hernandez is one of the most successful players in Champion’s League history, winning the prestigious club competition in 2006, 2009 and 2011. Xavi formed a brilliant partnership with teammate Iniesta, with the pair succeeding both at the international and club level.
Is Xavi Hernandez being unfairly frozen out by Barcelona? Will Manchester United make a move in the January transfer window for Xavi?
[Images via Google]