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Xavi’s departure from Barcelona as good as done after PSG exit

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Photo by JOSEP LAGO/AFP via Getty Images

Xavi’s dream of winning the UEFA Champions League trophy in his farewell season managing Barcelona was shattered last night as the team suffered a devastating 1-4 loss to Paris Saint-Germain.

Interestingly, the outcome holds significant weight for Xavi’s future at Barcelona. With La Liga seemingly slipping out of reach and earlier losses in the Copa del Rey and the Spanish Super Cup, the Champions League was the last hope for salvaging the season.

This means the defeat on the home turf against PSG feels like the final blow. 

Right now, the club management faces the daunting task of convincing Xavi to reconsider his decision to step down and it is not just about offering reassurances anymore; decisive action is needed to sway his decision.

An exit on harsh decisions

It just wasn’t Barcelona’s night. Raphinha’s early goal had given them the lead, but by the stroke of the half-hour mark, lightning struck as Ronald Araujo was given his marching orders.

After the match ended, Xavi, still seething with emotion, descended to the pitch and swiftly approached the referee to express his dissatisfaction with a call made during the game. 

Xavi was not happy with the referee. (Photo by FRANCK FIFE/AFP via Getty Images)

He clasped the referee’s hand firmly and took the opportunity to convey his belief that the decision was a disaster and the expression on the referee’s face conveyed the tension of the moment. 

During the subsequent press conference, Xavi persisted in his critique of the referees, even bringing up incidents from the previous match.

“It doesn’t matter how much we talk, the fact is that the red card ruined the match. I don’t like to talk about referees but we have to say it. We can’t be silent,” said the manager.

“It’s a real shame. The referee ruined all of the work this season. I wanted to play 11 vs 11, fairly,” he added.

It is over for Xavi

Xavi is acutely aware that the season is almost over for him. While the hope of clinching the league title remains, it feels more like a dream than a tangible goal. 

Amidst this uncertainty looms the question of his own future with the team. Despite the speculation circulating in recent weeks, Xavi has remained steadfast in his decision to step down from his position at the end of the season.

It is no secret that his chances of staying depended on shining in both the Champions League and La Liga. Unfortunately, that has not happened. Despite clinching last season’s league title, the unmet expectations this year seal his departure.

Leaving with a legacy

Xavi will leave Barcelona with a strong legacy. (Photo by JOSEP LAGO/AFP via Getty Images)

The team’s financial woes hampered reinforcements last summer, and injuries piled up, leaving this season without success unless a league miracle occurs.

Yet, even without trophies, the coach leaves a remarkable legacy. He has nurtured talents like Lamine Yamal and Pau Cubarsi, who are poised to become future stars. 

His dedication to youth development is undeniable and it is a gift that Barcelona will surely appreciate down the line.

The disappointment resonates not only through the team but also across the fanbase and the footballing world. Xavi’s legacy, however rich it was, hangs in the balance, with his final chapter clouded by this bitter defeat.

As the dust settles on this crushing loss, Barcelona must regroup and chart a new course forward. Whether Xavi stays or goes, the club must navigate the aftermath and rebuild for the seasons ahead. 

The road ahead may be uncertain, but one thing is clear: Barcelona’s journey continues, with or without Xavi at the helm.

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