Barcelona midfielder Xavi Hernandez has revealed that Celtic Park is one of the best stadiums that he has played at in his 16-year long career.
Xavi, who is the most successful Spanish player in history, after winning 25 trophies during his glittering career, believes that there is no ground that he has played at that compares to Celtic’s home stadium.
Xavi said: “I don’t think I have seen anything like the Celtic fans in all the stadiums I have played in. When you step out at Celtic Park, the atmosphere they create for their team is incredible.
“It doesn’t matter how many big games you have played in, walking out into that atmosphere is always intense. What makes them the best for me is their support when they lose. It is easy to make noise when you win against Barcelona, but in Spain we beat them 6-1 and most fans would have left the stadium.
“However, at the end, the fans were making noise like they had just won the Champions League, not like a team that had just conceded six.”
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Henrik Larsson told me how special Celtic was
The 34-year old also revealed that he understands why his former Barcelona team-mate Henrik Larsson spent seven years at Celtic when he could have played for any club in the world.
“Henrik Larsson used to talk about them and it is easy to see why he chose to spend so much of his career there.
“He could have played at any club, but when you are idolised like he was, I can see why he didn’t want to leave.”
I wish I had played with Scholes
The Spanish midfielder has won everything there is to win for both Barcelona and Spain, yet he still has some regrets about his career. Xavi claims that although he has played with one of the best players ever in Lionel Messi, he wishes that he had shared the same dressing room as Paul Scholes.
He said: “Messi is the best already, the best there has ever been.
“I would loved to have played with Scholes. He plays the game the way it should be played and at his peak he was the best midfield player in the world.
“I don’t think it could have ever happened though because of his love and loyalty for Manchester United, was the same as mine for Barcelona.”