After the departure of Gerard Pique, two of the most criticised veterans at Barcelona still remain: Jordi Alba and Sergio Busquets.
The latter is out of contract next summer and with some shaky performances this season, many expect him to move on. Busquets will turn 35 next summer and is open to leaving the club for a new life in Major League Soccer and the USA.
The technical team at Barcelona were also expecting that to be the case. With his salary one of the largest in the squad, combined with his age, the club had planned to bid him farewell at the end of the season.
To that end, Ruben Neves of Wolves and Martin Zubimendi have been consistently linked with moves to Barcelona.
However Xavi Hernandez is increasingly likely to try and persuade the club to offer Busquets a renewal. Neither of those options to replace Busquets look feasible and with no obvious candidates to take over, Xavi would prefer to hold onto Busquets, who he still feels can do a job.
As per Sport, the major issue would be his salary. Barcelona would have to significantly reduce his wages in order to even countenance doing so.
While it is true that Barcelona will struggle to bring in a replacement financially, it seems like a weak reason to hold onto Busquets. While he has shown for Spain that he can still operate at a high level in the right system, Xavi has rarely been able to provide that structure for Busquets at Camp Nou. Unless he can work out how to do so, it makes more sense to persist with Frenkie de Jong, Pedri and Gavi as a midfield trio.