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Xavi Insists Barcelona Should Still Be in Champions League Ahead of Man United Showdown
- Xavi Hernandez has made a honest confession about the UEFA Champions League
- Barcelona have failed to reach the UCL knockout stages in two successive seasons
- The 42-year-old manager insists the Catalan giants belong playing at the elite level
Xavi Hernandez is still rueing Barcelona's exit from the Champions League ahead of his side's Europa League blockbuster with Manchester United.
La Blaugrana dropped down from Europe's premier club competition after finishing third in Group C behind Bayern Munich and Inter Milan.
The Catalan giants managed a paltry seven points from six group matches and are billed for a blockbuster Europa League clash with another sleeping giant in Manchester United, per CNN.
Ahead of his side's clash in the secondary European competition, the 42-year-old tactician admitted he gets annoyed with the Champions League anthem.
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"It still makes me angry to listen to the Champions League anthem from home. For history and greatness, [Barcelona] should be there," he said as quoted by GOAL.
However, Xavi was quick to acknowledge the Europa League and said the team had to face its reality.
"We are excited about this competition, which has been very beautiful for the teams that have remained."
He added: "It’s always important, and more so in Europe, since we’re coming off a few seasons without success. It’s a good test, without a doubt, to see that we can compete in Europe."
Xavi levels up with Guardiola
Pep Guardiola is referred to as one of Barcelona’s best managers in history, but Xavi is set to eclipse the Spaniard’s records with the Catalan giants this season.
La Blaugrana are now on a 16-game unbeaten run following their latest La Liga victory, as Pedri’s goal secured a slim 1-0 win against Villareal.
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Xavi is now reported to have matched Guardiola's finest winning streak at Barcelona, with 11 consecutive victories across all competitions.
Dembele, Busquets missing vs United
Barcelona manager, Xavi announced the squad list for their Europa League encounter against Premier League giants, Man United.
Sports Brief also reported on the Catalan giants playing host to the Red Devils in the first leg encounter at Camp Nou on February 16.
Neither Ousmane Dembele nor Sergio Busquets made the cut for the first leg after they both picked up injuries earlier in the month.