Former Barcelona midfielder and club legend Xavi Hernandez has named Paris Saint-Germain star Marco Verratti as the man who would be the 'ideal signing' for his former club.

Xavi told Le Parisien ahead of Wednesday night's Champions League last 16 second leg clash between the two teams that Verratti - who was sensational in PSG's 4-0 first leg humbling of the Catalan giants - that he sees qualities in the Italian that Xavi had when he was at the peak of his career.


He said: “Verratti would be the ideal signing for Barcelona in my opinion.

“I think Verratti is a bit like me. He always goes in search of the ball quite deep on the pitch and then takes it forward and dictates play. Verratti is small just like me and he never loses the ball. His technique is incredible.

“He is a player I would love to see at Barcelona.”

Barca have been linked with Verratti for several months, though the player has also been talked up as a potential target for Premier League leaders Chelsea and Italian giants Juventus and Inter. This however is not the first time Xavi has gone public with his praise of Verratti, as he claimed in early 2016 that the player had "Barca DNA".

He ​said at the time“There’s two players I really like, both of whom I think have Barca’s DNA. They are Marco Verratti and Paulo Dybala.

“They are amazing and, thanks to their quality and style of play, would easily integrate into the [Barca] machine. I see them as future stars at the club."

Verratti will be hoping to seal the victory over his potential future employers in the fixture at Camp Nou on Wednesday evening, with Barcelona needing a minor miracle to turn the tie around.

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