Xavi Reverses Decision, Extends Barcelona Contract

Barcelona coach Xavi has made a dramatic U-turn on his decision to leave the club, announcing that he will remain at the helm until at least the end of his contract in June 2025.

The 44-year-old had initially declared in January that he would step down as boss at the conclusion of the current season. However, after discussions with president Joan Laporta, Xavi has opted to extend his stay at Barcelona.

Xavi took over as Barcelona’s head coach in November 2021, following his departure from Qatari club Al Sadd. In his debut full season in charge, he led the team to the Spanish title in 2022-23.

Despite this success, Barcelona finds themselves 11 points behind La Liga leaders Real Madrid with only six games remaining in the current campaign. Additionally, their Champions League campaign ended in disappointment with a quarter-final defeat to Paris St-Germain.

Xavi’s decision to stay comes after he expressed feeling “liberated” upon initially announcing his departure. However, since that declaration, the team’s performance improved, going on a 10-game unbeaten streak in the league before a recent defeat to Real Madrid.

Following a meeting at Laporta’s house on Wednesday, it became evident that there was significant pressure from the club for Xavi to remain in his role.

Looking ahead, Barcelona will expect improvements from Xavi as they aim to reclaim their dominance in Spanish and European football. If he fails to deliver by the end of the 2024-25 season, the club has indicated they will pursue other high-profile managers, including Pep Guardiola, Luis Enrique, and Mikel Arteta, who will be out of contract at that time.

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