Is FC Barcelona Already Lining Up Replacement For Under-Fire Xavi?

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A report from SPORT journalist Alfredo Martinez could lead to suspicions that FC Barcelona is preparing to replace under-pressure head coach Xavi Hernandez with Real Sociedad’s Imanol Alguacil in 2025.

Club legend Xavi is feeling the heat in the hotseat as of late after recently passing two years overseeing the Catalans.

Though he was heralded for delivering a first La Liga title in four years in his maiden full term, plus the Super Cup, cracks have begin to emerge during the recording of his difficult second album.

Defending their domestic crown, Barca had managed to go unbeaten in 2023/2024 until bitter rivals Real Madrid came back from behind to top them 2-1 in El Clasico at the end of October.

This setback was the catalyst for another loss to Shakhtar Donetsk in the Champions League, and though their own 2-1 comeback win over Alaves helped take the edge off, Xavi again had to address whether his team is going through a “crisis” after they stumbled and drew 1-1 at Rayo Vallecano on Sunday.

The stalemate could leave Barca as many as six points off the chase at the top of the table if Girona and Real Madrid both win their Matchday 14 fixtures, and mumbles about whether Xavi is the right man to steer the ship are gathering traction and increasing in volume.

As explained by Martinez, however, it is possible that the Barca board led by president Joan Laporta, and his sporting director Deco, are already looking at the big picture beyond next season in mid-2025.

This is when Alguacil’s contract at Real Sociedad expires, and the pair plus midfielder Pedri all made their admiration clear for one of Spanish football’s best managers when crossing paths with him at the Marca Football Awards Gala 2022-2023 on Thursday.

Laporta reportedly congratulated the Basque and told him that La Real “play football that he loves” while Deco and Pedri were also full of praise.

Those who know Alguacil believe he could do a great job commanding a young squad like Barca’s after also working in his current club’s youth academy ahead of promotion.

Coincidentally, Xavi’s deal renovated in September also runs down around the same time that Alguacil’s does.

If things haven’t improved, June 2025 might provide the platform for a clean break and a change of figure behind the wheel.

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