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The Praetorian Guard of Xavi Hernandez

BarcelonaWith Xavi, the revolution arrives. If his face is well known to all Barça fans, the Vallès native will be accompanied by a new batch of lesser-known coaches and experts with whom he will try to regain Barça’s optimism. A young coaching staff that has been trained in football fields in the middle of Catalonia.

His right hand man will be his older brother, Òscar, who was a footballer in the Second B in clubs such as Terrassa, Mataró and Gavà. Òscar has worked at the Aspire Academy in Qatar, working alongside Xavi in ​​recent years. The third coach is Sergio Alegre, born in Terrassa in 1974, a club where he started as a coach until he made the leap to Barça in 2002 to be the right hand of coach Sergio Lobera. In 2007 he returned home to lead the Terrassa youth team, and then went to the Rubí bench and the Olot technical secretariat. In 2017 he made the leap to the Qatar under-23 team, where he ended up being part of Xavi’s circle of trust thanks to Òscar, with whom they had known each other for years.

Xavi arrives with a team of three analysts. That is, those in charge of following the matches from the stands, recording and analyzing everything David Prats, Toni Lobo and Sergio Garcia. Prats is a well-known face of Catalan football after passing through La Masia, where he became the top scorer for Barça C. It was at Barça where he was part of Xavi’s own team and they started a friendship that is not never broke. Other members of that team were Lobo and Sergio Garcia, players who made a career in Catalan football. Who did it best was Prats, in clubs like Terrassa, Poli Ejido, Mataró, Sant Andreu, L’Hospitalet or the club of his city, Badalona. As a coach, he started in modest clubs such as Sant Gabriel or Badaloní, until he took charge of the youth team of Sant Andreu accompanied by Toni Lobo. That’s where they were when Felix Sanchez called them to leave for Qatar, to work in the under-23 team. Here they would meet again with Xavi.

A former handball player

Along with Xavi also comes Iván Torres, the new physical coach of Barça’s first team, with experience in clubs such as Leeds United, AEK Larnaca and Apoel de Cyprus. He will take the place of Juanjo Brau, who leaves the first team. The new physiotherapist, Carlos Nogueira, is a 31-year-old Galician who started playing handball at BM Lalín. Later, combining it with the studies of physiotherapy in the University of Vigo, would play in other clubs until it left the competition and fichó by the selection of Qatar. Xavi, however, when he learned of his work, convinced him to be part of his team. He has also decided that José Ramón de la Fuente will continue at the club as a goalkeeping coach. De la Fuente, then, will be the sole survivor of the Koeman era. The goalkeeper coach that Xavi Hernández had at Al-Sadd, Xavi Ferrando, will continue in Doha with the recuperator, Mario Jiménez.

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