Taking the helm of the Blaugrana as a relatively inexperienced coach, a lot of questions were posed around the quality and ability of Xavi to manage such a major club early in his managerial career.
Before he returned to Barcelona, Xavi had spent the last seven years in his career in Qatar. He played for the Qatari club Al-Sadd for four years before retiring and immediately moving into football management. The Spaniard transitioned into Al-Sadd’s manager, enjoying quite a lot of success with them.
Indeed, Xavi helped them win the Qatar top division as well as all the domestic cup competitions. That compelled Barca to bring him back after sacking Ronald Koeman through the middle of the 2021/22 season. To his credit, Xavi has gotten better as his time as Barca manager has progressed and looks set to guide them to the La Liga title.
But Real Madrid fans found it really funny that Barca trusted the Spaniard to beat Los Blancos to the league title towards the beginning of the 2022-23 season. Some Madridistas even developed a chant for him after Madrid’s 3-1 win over the Blaugrana in the El Clasico in October 2022.
What is the meaning behind the ‘Xavi Quedate’ chant?
After Madrid’s win over Barca in the first El Clasico of the 2022/23 La Liga season, some of their fans grew really cocky and were confident that the club would struggle to compete for major trophies with an inexperienced manager like Xavi at the helm.
The Spanish gaffer has even attracted criticism from his own fanbase at times, especially for his poor record in European competitions – with Barca knocked out of both the Champions Leauge and Europa League in embarrassing fashion this season.
Some Madrid fans began to chant ‘Xavi Quedate’ during their side’s win over Barca at the Santiago Bernabeu earlier this campaign. This roughly translates to ‘Xavi Stay’ – as the Madrid fans really wanted the Barca gaffer to stay on and make it easier for Los Blancos to win the domestic competitions.
How the chant came back to haunt Real Madrid
While the Madrid faithful might’ve been on top of the world in October, they’ve had a bitter dose of karma come back to haunt them ever since. Los Blancos are yet to win any El Clasico against Xavi’s Barca since and the Spaniard has been outwitting Carlo Ancelotti in recent meetings.
Indeed, Barca have won their last three games against Real Madrid (in all competitions) – including the crucial 2-1 win in their La Liga meeting on Sunday. The Blaugrana are 11 points ahead of Madrid in the La Liga table and look set to win the La Liga title. Not just that, but Barca also holds the advantage in their Copa Del Rey semi-final clash – having won the first leg at the Santiago Bernabeu by the margin of 1-0.
So it appears that the Madrid fans’ taunts and chants for Xavi only fuelled his determination to excel as Barca manager and get the better of Los Blancos. While anything can happen in football, as it stands, it looks like Xavi’s Barcelona will win both the La Liga and Copa Del Rey to make the taunting Madridstas eat humble pie.