Xavi Hernandez has once again defended the nation of Qatar and believes it will be a ‘tremendous’ location to host the World Cup.
There has been a great deal of criticism that the oil-rich Middle East nation was awarded the rights to host the next tournament, which will be played over winter months rather than in summer.
Aside from the lack of infrastructure, size and football heritage of the nation, there are multiple concerns over the nation’s human rights record.
Xavi previously sparked controversy when stating that the political system in Qatar worked better than it did in Spain.
In 2017, the Spaniard scooped €227k after winning the Doha Bank lottery jackpot , amid scepticism over its legitimacy.
The former Barcelona captain is currently managing Qatari club Al Sadd having finished his playing career at the club after departing the Camp Nou in the summer of 2015.
“Preparation for the World Cup? It looks tremendous in every way: infrastructure, stadiums -five of eight are almost finished, then there are the hotels,” Xavi told an interview with Marca. “The country has changed a lot: roads, restaurants …Qatar is growing at a great speed. Even traffic has improved.
“It will be a historic World Cup, without a doubt. People are going to be amazed at what the country is. In general, there are many prejudices and there is much unfounded criticism. Qatar has it all: a small, hospitable and generous country. It will be a historic World Cup.”
Xavi made 767 first-team appearances for the Catalan giants between 1998 and 2015, alongside winning 133 caps for the Spanish national team.
He won eight La Liga titles alongside three Copa del Rey crowns and four Champions League trophies in his total of 25 titles with the club.