Atletico Madrid boss Diego Simeone has praised rival Xavi for his work at Barcelona this season.
La Blaugrana are currently leading the way in the La Liga title race as they aim for a first league title since 2019.
Xavi has faced questions over his tactics in recent weeks, with the former Spanish international accused over being over pragmatic, in his pursuit of league points.
Barcelona have won four of their last six league matches by a 1-0 score line, with La Roja star Pedri playing the key role for Xavi.
Simeone was asked for his view on Barcelona’s form since the start of 2023 with the Argentinian offering his backing to Xavi’s stance.
“Barcelona is the best team in La Liga at the moment. Xavi transmits a very clear message”, as per reports from Diario AS.
“He started with pure wingers, now he is playing with a wide midfielder, like Gavi or Pedri, instead of three forwards, but he’s doing extraordinarily well.
“The Barca style has not changed, but with the arrival of Xavi, they recovered the essence of the club.
“They have improved a lot in defence, Araujo and Christensen have played well.”
Barcelona host Cadiz this weekend, with Atletico hosting Athletic Club, and they will be aiming to extend their title edge against the Andalucians.
Xavi’s charges then off head to Old Trafford for their Europa League last 16 play off second leg in midweek with the tie evenly poised ahead of the return fixture.