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Xavi aware his position could be under threat if Barcelona do not win vs FC Porto

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Photo by OSCAR DEL POZO/AFP via Getty Images

It has been a difficult past month or so for FC Barcelona manager Xavi Hernandez, with performances and results not meeting the desired levels.

Over the last month, Barcelona have won only two of their last five matches in all competitions, which includes two crucial losses against Real Madrid and Shakhtar Donetsk in La Liga and the UEFA Champions League, respectively.

This past weekend, Barça were held to a 1-1 draw by Rayo Vallecano, which has only served to ramp up the pressure on the 43-year-old tactician.

Xavi’s position could be under threat

Now, Javi Miguel of AS is reporting that Xavi is very much aware that if Barcelona do not win against Porto on Tuesday, his position at the club could come under threat.

‘A defeat or a draw against the Portuguese champions would open the gates of hell at ‘Can Barça’, with the Egarvian coach as the main target,’ writes Javi Miguel, indicating that Xavi could face the music if things do not go well against Porto.

The coach is understood to be fully aware that anything less than a win against Porto would leave his project in tatters.

Knowing the vital importance of the match, Xavi will set aside any rotations and field a team full of experienced and proven players, with the priority objective of recovering the good feelings and securing qualification to the last 16 of the Champions League.

Having failed to lead them past the group stages in the last two seasons, it is imperative that Xavi puts an end to that curse this time out.

Under pressure. (Photo by Angel Martinez/Getty Images)

No homegrown player expected in the lineup

As such, Xavi is expected to make some major changes to the team tomorrow, starting with recalling Ronald Araujo, Jules Kounde, Ilkay Gundogan, Raphinha, and Joao Felix to the lineup, while Marc-Andre ter Stegen could also feature if he is fit.

Pedri, Robert Lewandowski, Inigo Martinez, Joao Cancelo, and Frenkie de Jong will likely retain their spots in the team, as per the report.

If Xavi does go ahead with such a side, the Barcelona lineup will not have a single homegrown player within the ranks.

The pressure is certainly on for Xavi and if things do not go according to plans, there appears to be a successor already identified in Barça Atletic boss Rafa Marquez.

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