Alex Grimaldo issues verdict on Xavi return ahead of Barcelona vs Benfica

Former Barcelona defender Alex Grimaldo has backed Xavi Hernandez to ‘change everything’ at Barcelona.

Xavi recently returned to Camp Nou to become the club’s new head coach following the sacking of Ronald Koeman.

And he got off to a winning start over the weekend as Barca defeated Catalan rivals Espanyol thanks to a controversial penalty.

But his second game in charge will be far more important, with Barca facing Benfica in a crucial Champions League clash.

A win will send Barca through to the knockout stage with a game to spare, while a defeat would leave them likely to crash out of the competition.

And ahead of Tuesday night’s big clash, a former Barca defender in Grimaldo, who played for the club for seven years – although he never managed a senior appearance – has been talking about the possible impact of Xavi.

The now Benfica star told Mundo Deportivo: “I think that the arrival of Xavi could change everything, he could return the confidence that maybe they had lost a little.

“Xavi will give more strength to the team. Also, he will contribute the same ideas as a coach that he had as a player. Barcelona will grow a lot during the year.”

Tags Alex Grimaldo Benfica Champions League FC Barcelona Xavi Hernandez