Xavi talks Dembele, Christensen, Messi ahead of Barcelona vs Rayo Vallecano

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Xavi spoke about the return dates of Ousmane Dembele and Andreas Christensen, the prospect of training Messi, playing Eric as a pivot in the absence of Sergio Busquets, Ter Stegen’s impressive form, and being called gardener in his pre-match press conference ahead of the match against Rayo Vallecano.

Xavi on the game against Rayo:

“I know it’s cliché but tomorrow’s match is very complicated. It’s a very united team, they make tactical mistakes and make us feel uncomfortable. They are the most intense.”

Xavi on winning La Liga:

“I haven’t thought about where I prefer to win La Liga, what I want most is to win it, but it won’t be easy. We still have difficult games to go and there are a lot of points. The goal is to win it, I’m focused on that. There are 24 points left to play and we are at +11. It is an important distance but not significant and each victory is a step closer.”

Xavi on breaking records:

“I don’t think about records, I think about winning La Liga. You have to remember where we were last year. It’s the comparison, not the team that won trebles.”

Xavi on being called gardener:

“Being called a gardener dates back several years. I don’t mind it and I won’t stop. Better to be a gardener than anything else. Tomorrow I hope the grass will be up to standard size. Playing at 10:00 pm favors us as well.”

Xavi on Messi, Busquets, and Alba having a dinner yesterday:

“I just had dessert with them. They didn’t tell me anything.”

Xavi on Gavi being fouled more often:

“I don’t have the feeling that Gavi is receiving more kicks in recent games. He just goes into duels a lot. Physically he’s very strong, he wins many duels. I always tell him to watch out. The other day he picked up a yellow card in the first minute, but then held up well.”

Xavi on Ter Stegen’s impressive form:

“I know Ter Stegen’s personality because I played with him. He’s a very methodical person and right now he’s the best goalkeeper in the world. He helps us even more because of our way of playing.”

Xavi on coaching Messi next season:

“These are hypotheses (coaching Messi). We are focused on La Liga, nothing else. I like to talk about Leo, we have a very good relationship. but now it’s time for Rayo.”

Xavi on his renewal:

“We have been talking with the President. I have a very good relationship with him. There are talks and there will be no problems.”

Xavi on the availability of Dembele and Christensen:

“Ousmane Dembélé and Andreas Christensen will be available for Saturday’s game against Real Betis.”

Xavi on playing Eric as a pivot:

“He is one of the options. We have Frenkie and we have called Casadó. Eric already did it in Elche and he did it very well. We will decide tomorrow.”

Xavi on Ancelotti’s comments regarding points difference:

“I agree with Ancelotti. This means that we have done things in an excellent way. I take that as high praise.”

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