Five Barcelona players unhappy with Xavi’s decisions – report

Date:

Barcelona's Spanish coach Xavi addresses a press conference at the Joan Gamper training ground in Sant Joan Despi, near Barcelona, on January 30, 2024.
Photo by PAU BARRENA/AFP via Getty Images

Having failed to win any major trophy this season, tensions are mounting at FC Barcelona. Earlier, it seemed that despite this trophyless season, Xavi will remain in charge of the team for the next season, and will try to get some silverware back to the club.

However, some recent events have once again brought the uncertainty back on the Barcelona bench. As already reported, the President, Joan Laporta, was not too happy with some of the comments that Xavi made in a recent presser, and is considering sacking the head coach in the coming days.

However, according to a report from Mundo Deportivo, it is not only the President who is upset with Xavi, as some of his key players are also not too happy with some of his decisions. The report has mentioned five key players who believe they are not being fairly treated by the Barcelona head coach.

The most important of these players is the striker Robert Lewandowski, who is one of the leaders of the team. The Pole has been playing constantly but is not satisfied with how Xavi has been substituting him early in games, with the game against Almeria the fourth in a row in which he was substituted.

The veteran striker is still in contention for the Pichichi, but still trails the leader, Artem Dobvyk, by three goals, and while he has not publicly spoken on this matter, his expressions after each substitution are not too difficult to interpret.

The only other natural striker in the team, Vitor Roque, is also far from happy under Xavi, and his situation is rather well-known. He appeared for the last 17 minutes in the game against Almeria after not having stepped on the pitch since his start against Cadiz.

His agent, Andre Cury, has already condemned Barcelona for not using Roque and has also threatened an exit if his client’s situation does not improve.

Another forward who has seen his involvement in the team dwindle considerably in the last few weeks is the Portuguese winger, Joao Felix. The last start for the loanee came back in the match against Cadiz, which was sandwiched between the two PSG games. He also scored a bicycle goal in that match, which won the Goal of the Month award from La Liga.

However, since that game, he has added only 85 minutes to his game time and was visibly disappointed as he returned to the bench after warming up in the match against Real Sociedad.

The forward is already considering whether he should continue at Barcelona after seeing his game time dwindle despite having scored 10 goals and given 6 assists in 24 starts.

The fourth player to have issues with Xavi’s game management is Raphinha, who has started almost all the important games for his team but is not impressed with how Xavi has substituted him.

He expressed his displeasure at being replaced at the 66th minute in the match against Valencia, when the score was 2-2, or at the 69th minute in the match against Girona, when the score was already 3-2.

Lastly, the defender Ronald Araujo has also had some disagreements with Xavi, and both the player and the manager have already spoken on this issue.

Barring Vitor Roque, and perhaps Joao Felix, all these players are extremely important parts of the Barcelona team, and keeping them satisfied should be a top priority for the head coach.

Hopefully, he will be able to handle this situation well in the coming days, but for now, he will have to ensure that he remains in the dugout for the next season.

Ahmad Sarmad Ansari
Ahmad Sarmad Ansari
Ahmad Sarmad Ansari has been covering Spanish football as a writer for Barca News Network for the last one and a half year and as an amateur football fanatic for more than 10 years. He mainly covers on and off-field happenings taking place at Barcelona including transfer news, administrative changes, match reports, and any other eventful news coming out of the club.

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