June 12th, 2024

Barcelona says Xavi Hernandez will not return as coach next season

By The Associated Press on May 24, 2024.

Barcelona's head coach Xavi Hernandez, center, gives instructions during a Spanish La Liga soccer match between Barcelona and Rayo Vallecano at the Olimpic Lluis Companys stadium in Barcelona, Spain, Sunday, May 19, 2024. (AP Photo/Joan Monfort)

BARCELONA, Spain (AP) – Barcelona says coach Xavi Hernandez is leaving the club at the end of the season.

The Spanish club made the announcement Friday after a meeting between club president Joan Laporta, Xavi and several other senior figures at the team’s training ground.

The club said Laporta “has informed Xavi Hernández that he will not be continuing as first team coach in the 2024-25 season.”

Xavi’s last game in charge will be Sunday’s away game against Sevilla on the final day of the league season.

His departure comes a month after Xavi had reversed a previous decision made in January to leave the club this summer. In April, Xavi said that he had changed his mind after his players showed him that they believed in the team’s potential and had improved their performances.

But Laporta had reportedly been displeased by Xavi’s recent comments in a news conference that Barcelona’s poor financial situation would make it nearly impossible to compete against Real Madrid and Europe’s other top clubs.

The former midfielder led Barcelona to the Spanish league title last year but the team is eight points behind already crowned champion Madrid going into the last round.

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AP soccer: https://apnews.com/hub/soccer

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