Barcelona’s Future Coach: Xavi Hernandez Out, Rafael Marquez In?

The Catalan media sealed the future of Xavi Hernandez this Wednesday, the day after the elimination of FC Barcelona against Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League. Unless the situation changes, the Blaugrana coach will leave and should make way for Rafael Marquez.

Despite a contract until 2025 (plus an optional year), Xavi Hernandez should not remain Barça coach after the 2023-2024 season. Frustrated by his team’s possible white season and the club’s difficulties, the technician has indicated on several occasions his intention to leave during the summer.

If his president Joan Laporta and his sports director Deco still hope to convince him to stay, the elimination against PSG in the quarter-finals of the Champions League (1-4, 4-6 in aggregate) seem to have confirmed his departure for the offseason. According to information from the Catalan newspaper Sport, Rafael Marquez will be Barça’s next coach if Xavi confirms his departure. The Catalan radio Rac1 is more cautious, ensuring that it is indeed a real lead but that it is not recorded.

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Good work with the Barça reserve

Former emblematic defender of Barcelona in the 2000s, the Mexican has kept his aura intact in Catalonia. Already present at the club where he has led the reserve team since the summer of 2022, Rafael Marquez is doing a good job with the hopes of La Masia. Second in Spanish D3 after 32 matches, Barça B is provisionally among the teams which will compete for promotion to the second division in the play-offs.

With offensive football (50 goals scored for 36 conceded) in the league, the Catalan reserve is used to evolving in the same tactical pattern as the first team and Rafael Marquez would then not need a long time of adaptation with the pro group.

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A lower cost solution?

In the same way, by opting for the internal solution with Rafael Marquez, Barça’s management would not go crazy financially and would not have to promise him too flashy a recruitment during the transfer window. Quite the opposite of Xavi who would like certain guarantees on summer recruits. Another point in favor of the Mexican, he is a former player of the club like Pep Guardiola, Luis Enrique and Xavi before him. An asset which would allow him to get ahead of the German tracks Hans-Dieter Flick and Julian Nagelsmann.

The only (small) downside is that certain culés leaders as well as Xavi would have only moderately appreciated the actions of the Mexican behind the scenes. He would be criticized in particular for having applied too quickly to replace Xavi when Barça was having a little trouble at the start of the season.

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2024-04-17 12:21:23
#Catalan #press #announcing #Xavis #successor #Barça #bench


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