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Xavi ready for managerial role at Barca, says City boss Guardiola

Xavi ready for managerial role at Barca, says City boss Guardiola

FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football - Emir Cup - Final - Al Sadd v Al Rayyan - Al Thumama Stadium, Al Thumama, Qatar - October 22, 2021 Al Sadd coach Xavi REUTERS/Ibraheem Al Omari

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola said on Friday (Oct 29) that he had no doubt that Xavi would be a fine manager if given the job at his former club Barcelona following the departure of Dutchman Ronald Koeman earlier this week.

Barca sacked Koeman after a defeat by Rayo Vallecano on Wednesday and have since appointed 'B' team coach Sergi Barjuan as interim manager.

However, Xavi, who enjoyed a hugely successful 17-year career at the club and is currently head coach of Qatari side Al Sadd, is being tipped to take over on a permanent basis.

Guardiola, who managed the Catalan side between 2008 and 2012 and won a club-record 14 trophies, said: "I don't know what will happen. I'm pretty sure sooner or later it will happen... in case it does... I don't have any doubts he's ready to do the job.

"He knows the environment which is so important in this role. He knows the game, he has passion. He has more experience now than I had when I took over from the 'B' team at Barcelona.

"Koeman knows and Sergi knows and Xavi knows and I know, success depends on the quality and the commitment and the players. People still forget, we are responsible for everything, but our influence is more minimal than people believe."

Guardiola will take charge of City for the 200th time in the Premier League when the champions face Crystal Palace on Saturday following elimination by West Ham United in the League Cup in midweek.

The coach said he was proud of what he had achieved - three Premier League titles, one FA Cup and four League Cups - but was unsure if he would be around for another 200 games.

"No I don't think so... I'm incredibly happy, we saw the team grow and grow and that's the best signal you are doing well... (in) 200 games, (I) cannot be more satisfied," added Guardiola.

The Spaniard, who will come up against Patrick Vieira in the opposition dugout on Saturday, was full of praise for the Palace boss who was formerly coach of the City reserve team.

"It's a privilege and honour, we were together a short time in Manchester. Now it changes the dynamic, the way Palace play, changing many things. They always had really good players," Guardiola said.

City are third in the league standings with 20 points from nine games. Palace are 11 points behind in 15th.

Source: Reuters

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