Xavi Hernandez denies ever saying Cristiano Ronaldo ‘isn’t smart’ and picks Spain as favourites for Euro 2016.
The former Barcelona and La Roja midfielder, now with Al Sadd, has explained that past comments he made regarding the Real Madrid forward were misconstrued in translation.
“Cristiano doesn’t seem as good a player at working with teammates, so I argued Lionel Messi is the best because he has two speeds, with teamwork and his actual speed. At no time did I speak of intelligence. I didn’t say Cristiano isn’t smart at all,” he insisted, Marca reports.
Xavi added that he recalls his time at Camp Nou fondly and admits to missing it, and assessed the state of La Liga.
“There’s an inequality at a football and economic level with Madrid and Barca in respect to the others, and in that sense there’s a lot of merit to what Atletico Madrid are doing,” he noted.
“I miss the Barca dressing room, the jokes, the rondos, the footballing level. Barca is the best team in the world and only Bayern Munich come close.”
Xavi claimed a number of trophies at international level and as he cast forward to Euro 2016, predicted a third straight continental success.
“They’re on the lines to compete well. They’ve got a difficult group but with a great Coach, who knows what to do, the players, and has a very good way to play,” he continued.
“There other teams who will compete. Obviously you can’t compete in or win every event.”