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Barcelona sack Xavi with flick set to replace him

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Xavi Hernandez

Barcelona sack Xavi with flick set to replace him

Xavi will take charge of Barcelona for the final time on Sunday, when they host Sevilla in their last La Liga match of the season.

The 44-year-old, who had been contracted until 2025, was informed of the club’s decision during a meeting with club president Joan Laporta and sporting director Deco on Friday – exactly one month since it was announced that he would remain at the club.

Former Spain midfielder Xavi said in January that he was going leave the Camp Nou, but he was persuaded to stay by Laporta in April.

But recent comments from Xavi, in which he opened up about the club’s financial struggles, are said to have angered Laporta.

Barcelona said they would like to “thank Xavi for his work as a coach” since taking charge in 2021.

“It is never easy to leave the club of your life, but I am very proud after two and a half years at the head of a dressing room that has been like a second family,” said Xavi in an open letter issued on social media.

“From Sunday I will be just one more Barca fan, in the stands.

“Because before being a player or a coach I am a Barcelona fan and I only want the best for the club in my life, which will always have me at its disposal.”

The Catalan club said a “new structure” will be confirmed in the coming days, with Flick set to take charge.

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The 59-year-old has been out of work since he was sacked by Germany in September 2023.

Flick, who replaced Joachim Low as national boss in 2021, became the first Germany manager to be sacked since the role was created in 1926, winning just 12 of his 25 matches in charge.

Flick’s stint with Germany came after he guided Bayern Munich to a treble in 2020, winning the Bundesliga, DFB-Pokal and Champions League.

Barcelona forward Robert Lewandowski, 35, played under Flick at the Allianz Arena for two seasons.

After guiding Barcelona to the La Liga title in 2022-23, Xavi’s side put up a disappointing defence to their crown this term.

The Catalans are 12 points behind rivals Real Madrid, with one game remaining in the season.

Barcelona were knocked out of the Champions League at the quarter-final stage by Paris St-Germain.

Xavi spent 17 years with Barcelona as a player, having emerged from the club’s La Masia academy.

After four years’ playing for Qatari side Al-Sadd, Xavi retired in 2019 to take over the side as manager.

He remained in Qatar for a further two seasons, before replacing Ronald Koeman in November 2021 as Barcelona boss.

Xavi helped the club to the La Liga title and Spanish Cup during his first full season in charge, earning the side a return to the Champions League.

Sevilla boss Quique Sanchez Flores has criticised Barcelona’s treatment of Xavi.

“I shouldn’t say this, but how badly Barcelona treats its legends. What a bad streak,” Flores told reporters on Friday afternoon.

“With Koeman, with Messi, with Xavi now – how bad. I wish clubs treated their legends well. That would be fantastic. Xavi is a legend of the club.”

Flores added he had “doubts the criticism about him [Xavi] is correct”.

Barcelona will finish the season second in LaLiga behind champions Real Madrid and Xavi will remain in charge for the game at Sevilla.

During his 141 games as Barcelona boss, Xavi won 89 matches – giving him a 63% win ratio.

Barcelona sack Xavi with flick set to replace him

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I’m dead, don’t exist anymore – Paul Pogba

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Paul Pogba

I’m dead, don’t exist anymore – Paul Pogba

Former Manchester United midfielder, Paul Pogba, has sent the football world into a frenzy and hysteria after making some deeply disturbing and disconcerting statement about his life.

In a viral video on social media, Pogba in a moment of deep emotional vulnerability, opened up about his struggle with life and how football, a sport he once loved passionately, has now become a source of misery and turmoil.

“I’m over. I’m dead. Paul Pogba doesn’t exist anymore.”, the French national team midfielder Paul Pogba said.

The footage captures the visibly unsettled 31-year-old football star, seated in what appears to be a tranquil outdoor setting, letting it all out in a no holds barred conversation

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“I don’t know who I am anymore. Football used to be my life, my passion. Now, it feels like I’ve lost myself,” Pogba confessed in the deeply poignant footage, which has elicited an outpour of sympathy and concern from fans and fellow athletes alike.

The French midfielder, known for his flair and dexterity on the pitch, has been a prominent figure in global football, having played for top clubs including Juventus and Manchester United, as well as representing France at international tournaments. His career has been marked by highs and lows, including pivotal moments in the sport’s spotlight and personal challenges.

Pogba’s heartfelt declaration has sparked speculation and concern among his supporters, with many expressing hopes for his well-being and eventual return to the sport he loves. The video underscores the pressures and uncertainties faced by athletes in the public eye, highlighting the toll that fame and expectation can take on individuals beyond their professional achievements

I’m dead, don’t exist anymore – Paul Pogba

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Napoli new manager Conte hopes to convince Osimhen

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New Napoli manager, Antonio Conte

Napoli new manager Conte hopes to convince Osimhen

New Napoli manager, Antonio Conte, has expressed his desire to speak privately with Victor Osimhen.

He wants to discuss Osimhen’s future amid uncertainty over a potential exit from the club.

Conte is looking at persuading the Super Eagles striker to continue plying his trade with the Serie A side.

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At the moment, nobody is willing to pay Osimhen’s €130m release clause.

Chelsea and Manchester United interest in the Nigerian star has dwindled as both team shifted their focus to younger forwards like Samuel Omorodion and Joshua Zirkzee, while Arsenal are now reportedly in talks with Viktor Gyökeres.

There is no bid forthcoming from PSG at the moment with only Al Ahli and Al Hilal looking as the only serious interested clubs. But the 25-year-old is not interested in a move to the Saudi Pro League

Napoli new manager Conte hopes to convince Osimhen

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Mikel Obi undergoes surgery in UK hospital

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Mikel Obi

Mikel Obi undergoes surgery in UK hospital

Former Super Eagles and Chelsea FC  footballer, Mikel Obi, says he recently underwent surgery at the Princess Grace Hospital in the United Kingdom.

Obi who shared the photos on his Instagram handle did not disclose the nature of the surgery he went for.

The former professional aged 37, began his career with local club Plateau United, before joining Norwegian club Lyn at the age of 17 in 2004.

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He switched to Chelsea in 2006 where he played as a defensive midfielder.  Obi spent 11 years in Chelsea where he won  two Premier League titles, four FA Cups, and the 2011–12 Champions League.

He  later played briefly for Tianjin TEDA, Middlesbrough, Trabzonspor and Stoke City.

He played both in the age grade and senior  teams for Nigeria over a period of 14 years between 2005 and 2019.

Mikel Obi undergoes surgery in UK hospital

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