Xavi Hernandez backs captain Sergio Busquets after El Clasico criticism

Barcelona are back in action on Thursday this Thursday in a tough fixture against Villarreal at Camp Nou. The Blaugrana will be hoping for a reaction to their defeat in El Clasico and hopefully a few more answers to the questions that were raised.

In particular, Sergio Busquets came under fire for his performance at the Santiago Bernabeu, with many questioning his place in the side.

Speaking to Marca in his pre-match press conference, Xavi Hernandez defended Busquets against the criticism.

“It is always the same, three or four players are called out when you lose, this is Barcelona, it is normal.”

“When you lose, we are all exposed. For me, Busquets, I wouldn’t change a thing. He is still very important, he is key. There will be games that he does not play. But Busi always raises things, he is the captain and part of the team’s machinery. We have a very healthy dressing room. Things will end up coming off because I can see how things are working from inside.”

Rumours have begun to circulate that Barcelona will look for a replacement in January to inject some energy into the team.

He was also asked about Busquets’ contract, which ends next summer and whether it was an error in their planning to allow Miralem Pjanic and Nico Gonzalez out the door in the summer. He made it clear that it was their choice.

“It ends and that is a reality. We are in October. We’ll see how the season goes, the performance, if he’s comfortable. That is a personal decision. I decide as the season progressed. We have no natural relief in that position. We had Pjanic and Nico, but they decided to leave.”

The proof will very much be in his line-ups. It appears Xavi is reluctant to declare Frenkie de Jong as competition for Busquets, however the Dutchman has played there as a substitute for their captain in recent weeks.

Tags Barcelona Sergio Busquets Xavi Hernandez
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