With 17 players called up for the FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar, Barcelona are the highest-represented club in the gargantuan competition.
Several of Xavi’s disciples are shining on the big stage, including Pedri, Gavi, Ousmane Dembele and Frenkie de Jong. The Barcelona manager is in Qatar for ambassadorial duties while he also attends some select matches in the tournament.
During a public appearance, Xavi gave his two cents on the event in Qatar and the performances of his players while also talking about Lionel Messi’s upcoming battle against Robert Lewandowski. Here are the snippets of his media interaction (h/t FCB World).
On being asked to choose between Messi’s Argentina and Lewandowski’s Poland: “With the one who deserves it, obviously I wish them the best, they are good friends and I wish them the best.”
On Argentina’s chances: “Argentina is a candidate for the World Cup.”
On how it felt to win a World Cup: “Something exceptional, it cannot be described because it is a feeling as if you are touching the sky and this feeling stays with you forever. You will always be remembered as a world champion which is great.”
On the event being conducted in Qatar: “This World Cup in Qatar is exceptional. The organization is very good. As for the level of the matches, we have seen a very interesting level.
“I wish the organizers, the Qataris, and the Spanish national team the best and that they qualify and enjoy what they are presenting on the field.”
On Pedri and Gavi: “Lots of talent with Busquets too. I think they are playing very well and so is Alba. They do a lot for the group and for the team and I’m happy to see Barcelona players at a high level.”
On the role of fans: “Very important, I think the fans are very important, a big part of football is the fans. These events are a very good initiative for them to take part in and to be part of this tournament, it’s great.”
On whether he would like to participate in the competition: “Yes, I would like to, but I’m not in good shape.”
On former Barcelona manager Tata Martino’s poor results with Mexico: “He has the last match against Saudi Arabia to compensate.”
On Martino’s ability as a manager: “Tata Martino is a great coach, I have good memories with him at Barcelona. I wish him the best but in the end, winning these matches in the World Cup is very difficult.”