For a good few years now, Xavi has been tipped to become a future manager of FC Barcelona.
The world-class midfielder, who has plied his trade with Al Sadd since 2015, grew up in Barça’s famed La Masia academy before spending two years with the Catalan giants’ ‘B’ team.
Xavi then played for the first team for 17 years, playing 767 matches and scoring 85 goals.
He won a host of major honours during his spell at the Camp Nou including eight La Liga titles and four UEFA Champions Leagues.
In the process, the World Cup winner cemented his reputation as one of the greatest central midfielders of all time.
Aside from his achievements, Xavi is also an extremely intelligent footballer with a genuine love - obsession, even - for the game.
Few players are more engaging than the Spaniard when talking about the beautiful game in interviews.
Xavi: Coaching Barcelona is a dream
Xavi admitted in an interview with Le Parisien this week that coaching his beloved Barcelona is one of his ambitions.
"Becoming Barcelona coach is a dream," Xavi was quoted as saying by Goal. "And I am on the path of making it an actual project. I am working on becoming a coach, I have yet to earn my coaching badges.
"There are a lot of things to learn when it comes to dealing with a dressing room with 25 players and with a technical and medical staff.”
Xavi: I won't be replacing Luis Enrique
Xavi, however, admits he won’t be replacing Luis Enrique at the Camp Nou this summer, even though he’s as low as 25/1 with certain bookmakers to become Lionel Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez’s next boss.
"But replacing Luis Enrique next season already is not possible,” he continued. “I have yet to pass my exams.
"I am still thinking like a footballer rather than a coach. Next season will be my last as a player. From there on we will see what happens."
Xavi: The one player Barcelona should sign
However, if he did take the reins at his former club, there is one player Xavi would do his utmost to sign: Paris Saint-Germain’s excellent central midfielder Marco Verratti.
"Verratti would be the ideal signing for Barcelona in my opinion," Xavi told Le Parisien, per beIN Sports, ahead of Wednesday's second leg between Barcelona and PSG.
"I think Verratti is a bit like me. He always goes in search of the ball quite deep on the pitch and then takes it forward and dictates play.
"Verratti is small just like me and he never loses the ball. His technique is incredible.
"He is a player I would love to see at Barcelona."
PSG unlikely to sell Verratti
Most of Europe’s top clubs would love to sign the Italy international who was outstanding for PSG against Barcelona during last month’s first leg.
However, it’s hard to imagine the 24-year-old leaving the Parc des Princes in the near future.
PSG aren’t exactly short of cash, so anything less than a world-record bid for the Italy international would probably be rejected by the Champions League hopefuls.
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