Barcelona President Joan Laporta has publicly declared his full support of the Blaugrana manager Xavi Hernandez, while also lamenting the fact that his side were denied what he felt were two clear penalties against Rayo Vallecano.
Following two months of poor form, and a recent dip in results too, Xavi has come under increasing pressure in recent weeks. Over the weekend there was even speculation that Laporta had a successor in mind should things continue to go pear-shaped for Xavi.
Speaking to TV3, as recorded by MD, where he was assertive about Xavi’s future.
“We close ranks with the coach and his coaching staff. We have full confidence”;
“I have always said that he is our coach and that we are with him. We have complete trust.”
Of course a manager is never closer to the sack than when public statements are made expressing confidence in them, but Laporta at least nailed his colours to the Xavi mast in public. Laporta was also optimistic about a major potential banana skin against Porto in the Champions League.
“We trust that tomorrow’s meeting will go well. I see him very motivated. We talked before and after about Vallecas. We have been aware of the situation we have for some time.”
“Now he has all the players who had long-term injuries and that allows him to have more solutions. He has managed to overcome this period when he has had so many injuries and it was not easy.”
But did concur with his manager that they should have had two penalties, with both Raphinha and Robert Lewandowski being brought down late on at Vallecas during their 1-1 draw with Rayo.
“As for Raphinha, I think we all agree that it was a penalty like a cathedral [stonewall]. And Lewandowski’s too. They were two very clear penalties. We are trying to win, which is our task, the rest is already a thing of the past.”
Ahead of that clash against Porto, Xavi claimed that he felt fully supported by Laporta, the club, the team and Sporting Director Deco. While that may be the case, impatience is growing amongst the fans to see an improvement in a team which has been drifting along for some time. With Atletico Madrid and Girona coming after Porto, his future will likely appear much clearer in two weeks time.