Al Sadd insist Xavi ‘fully focused’ on job amid Barcelona speculation

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Al Sadd insist manager Xavi is “fully focused” on the team’s upcoming matches amid speculation over the vacant position at Barcelona.

The 41-year-old has been in charge of the Qatari club for two seasons but has been heavily linked with a return to his old side this week after they sacked Ronald Koeman on Wednesday.

At a press conference on Friday, Barca president Joan Laporta admitted he had been in contact with Xavi during the last month and talked up the coaching qualities of the four-time Champions League winner.

But Al Sadd responded ahead of their Qatar Stars League fixture with Al Ahli on Saturday.

A statement on its official Twitter account read: “In response to what’s circulating recently, the Al Sadd management reaffirms that Xavi has a two-year contract with the club and is fully focused on the team’s upcoming matches, to maintain our lead at the top of the league and to defend the title.”

Xavi progressed through Barcelona’s La Masia academy and spent 17 years as a first-teamer at the Nou Camp – eventually going on to captain the team and become one of the most decorated players in the club’s history – before he left in 2015 to join Al Sadd initially as a player.

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