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Joan Laporta breaks silence on Xavi’s sacking – ‘Interest of club above all else’


Barcelona president Joan Laporta continues to be embroiled in the thick of things as the club approaches the summer transfer window, a pivotal time of the year.

Now, in an interview on Barça One, Joan Laporta touched upon several matters related to Barça, particularly the managerial fiasco that involved Xavi.

The thought process behind Xavi’s sacking

The coach’s exit garnered a great deal of criticism, considering Xavi, upon the board’s persuasion, reversed his decision to resign, only to then abruptly get the axe.

Laporta has reflected on Xavi’s departure, acknowledging his achievements and claiming that, in the end, all parties reached a mutually advantageous settlement.

“Xavi has done a good job, he took over the team at a time of maximum difficulty. Last year we won the league and the Super Cup, but this year things haven’t worked out.

“In February I accepted that he should leave in June because he is a Culé and because it also helped us not to look for a replacement urgently. Then he asked us to continue and I asked him if he believed in the team and he said yes.

According to Laporta, the turning point came when Xavi and Laporta perceived the squad’s potential differently, prompting Laporta to search for alternatives, with Flick’s option appealing the most.

“What changed? A change of discourse about the squad and made me realise that I had to give another impulse, it made me think again, and I thought of Hansi Flick to get the best out of this squad.

“It has ended elegantly with Xavi, who has the club’s doors open to him because he has earned it. It has ended well and we are giving the team a boost,” he argued.

Furthermore, Laporta professed that Xavi’s demands to shake up the squad did not sit right with some of the board members. Eventually, Flick’s availability encouraged Barcelona to bite the bullet.

“Everything was forced when we accepted Xavi’s continuation because he had said he was leaving.”

Xavi was sacked by Laporta. (Photo by LLUIS GENE/AFP via Getty Images)

“He then spoke to the sporting management about substantial changes to the squad, I won’t go into the past with names, but the sporting management didn’t see it clearly, and neither did I and I decided to give another impulse with the change of coach.”

“With Deco, I have a great relationship and his opinion influences, although I took the decision. Having the option of Flick we made the decision that we believe will be best for the squad,” the president remarked.

On whether the timing was right

Laporta admitted that Xavi’s exit could have been carried out in a more respectable manner, but circumstances disallowed the club from proceeding formally.

“Everything could have been done better. The what is decided. But the how was done according to the circumstances of the moment and we were playing for second place in La Liga.

“After beating Rayo, I told Xavi that we would talk after the match in Seville because that week Barça women’s team were playing in the Champions League final.

But Xavi’s uncertainty and longing to know what was going on meant that it was announced before the women’s final,” he exclaimed.

The 61-year-old president has been receiving criticism in the media for mistreating Barcelona legends in the past.

Justifying his actions, Laporta argued that every decision is made for the good of Barça, even though his heartstrings urge him to hold back.

I had to make this decision with Barça legends. My heart told me to continue but my head didn’t. I hope that the good relationship will continue, with time we’ll see.

I have already experienced it with Koeman, Piqué, Alba, Messi, Busi and now with Xavi. All decisions are for the good of Barça in a difficult journey in the desert that I can already see ending. The interest of the club is above all else,” he asserted.



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