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Barcelona vs Napoli Europa League: Xavi regrets but optimistic despite Champions League exit

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Spanish giants FC Barcelona will take on Napoli in the UEFA Europa League round of 32. Head coach Xavi Hernandez sees it as a wake-up call even though he desired to play in the Champions League.

 

The Catalan club was booted out of the Champions League after finishing third at the end of the group phase. In what is seen as one of the club’s worst performances in a couple of years.

 

Xavi Hernandez regrets his team’s absence from the Champions but has more encouragement for the fans and the players.

 

Speaking exclusively to Spanish Newspaper El Pais, Xavi Hernandez said about how he feels and what must be done to accelerate the club’s growth.

 

“It makes us angry not to be in the Champions League, to listen to the music and not be there. It made me angry to see him from the sofa. It gives courage not to be as it also gave me when they eliminated us. But it is something that we have to rebel against and face now as an opportunity to compete and continue to grow”, said Xavi, always ambitious; “It is an opportunity and a title that Barça does not have. 

 

“It’s another motivation because we have to get back to the top.” Pedri seconded him: “We give a lot of value to the competition. We are not in the Champions League, where we would like, but we want to compete and win the Europa League ”. Xavi completed: “Our objective is to enter the Champions League and for that, we have two ways. Win the Europa League or finish the League in the top four. It is a European competition, and we expect a great atmosphere.”

 

Barcelona’s opponents Napoli are third in the Série A standings, with some key players facing uncertainties due to injuries. Coach of the side Luciano Luciano Spalletti knows what’s at stake coming up against the Spanish giants.

 

 “We haven’t been lucky in the draw, and it could be a Champions League tie. It is a very compact team. He wants the ball, but he defends well in a low block. It also has a good counter. They are expeditious, physically strong, and up to; they have high-level surprises”, recited Xavi.

 

Coming up against dangerous players like Victor Osimhen, Xavi Hernandez can count on his players even as the Italians still have issues of injuries in their team.

 

Against Napoli, Barcelona appears to have the upper hand with the turnaround in the attack due to the introduction of players like Adama Traore. Gabonese forward Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is also expected to be in the matchday squad. 

I'm a sports enthusiast, love writing about football. I have been writing about top teams in Europe, the Premier League and La Liga.

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