Guardiola and Xavi, teacher to disciple


The two coaches meet for the first time at the helm of Barca and Manchester City in a match staged with the aim of raising money for ALS research

Barcelona and Manchester City meet this Wednesday at the Camp Nou and they are doing it for a good cause, to raise money against amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). The friendly, promoted by Juan Carlos Unzué, will also serve for the first time to measure Xavi Hernández against Pep Guardiola. A clash of master against disciple in which a battle of style will be seen.

“I don’t want to beat Pep Guardiola or Johan Cruyff or anyone else. I have cherished myself of both and they are not enemies at all, has nothing to do with it, I am their student. My goal is to try to bring Barca back to the top of the world, not for me to win. I don’t have such a big ego,” said Xavi Hernández a few weeks ago when asked about his expectations for this season and the possibility of repeating the successes of his predecessors. on the Barça bench. His reaction, sharp, indicates the pressure to find the new leader on the bench in the city of Barcelona, ​​the replacement who will bring the relief of the style to the new generations.

And it is that this expectation has always been in the Camp Nou since Pep Guardiola decided to leave Barça in that distant 2012. The one from Santpedor left to take a sabbatical, but he did it with three Leagues, two Copas del Rey, three Spain Super Cups, two Champions, two European Super Cups and two Club World Cups in just four years. That bar, that of bringing the Catalans back to the top, was always there for anyone who decided to ascend the throne and it is accentuated with a Xavi who experienced all those successes as the central piece around which the whole game of the ‘Pep Team ‘ winner of the sextet.

As a player, Xavi was to Guardiola what Pep was to Cruijff, the compass. For this reason, and because of the style that Tarrasa’s now wants to adopt, the comparison between the two is inevitable. “I’m a student of theirs,” says Xavi. And he is not without reason, as much of the dynamism that Barça intend to carry out in the new project has been inherited from earlier phases. The 3-4-3 long lanes, Busquets’ position between the central defenders when coming from behind with the ball played, the pressure after a loss or the playmaking are part of the culé DNA and now the Tarrasa coach is the plants that seed so that future generations will continue to implement that model.

This Wednesday at Camp Nou will not see a clash of styles, but a confrontation of style. Barça will have another litmus test to assess where the new project is located. And he will have it in front of a mirror, a rival who knows perfectly each of the qualities of the culé model. “They think about football in the same way, they both played in the 6 position and worked together,” Lewandowski said in his presentation as Blaugrana when both coaches asked him. For this reason, the key will lie in subduing the rival, forcing him to betray himself and give up the possession that is so precious to both coaches.

For this, Xavi will be able to count on all his troops, including Jules Koundé, who has not yet been able to register in LaLiga. The French footballer could be the big novelty in a squad in which there will be rotations, but in which all players will have minutes during the clash to satisfy the more than 60,000 expected attendees at the Camp Nou. The game will also be an opportunity for Pjanic, Pique and Memphis Depay, three footballers that Xavi has until the end of the transfer market, but who have not yet had the chance to make their debut in the two league matches played.

It will not be an easy duel. Manchester City land at the Camp Nou and will do so with “Bernardo Silva and ten others”, as Guardiola acknowledged. The Portuguese attacker will become the main claim after a summer in which his name has not ceased to be linked to Barca and in the end all indications are that he will continue as a ‘sky blue’. Next to him will be the first swords such as Rodri, Grealish, Mahrez or Rúben Dias in a union that will have ALS and Unzué, who was diagnosed with the disease more than two years ago, as great protagonists.

Source: La Verdad


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