Xavi dismissed by Barcelona after plan to sell star player - report

  • Xavi relieved of his duties by Barcelona earlier this month
  • Manager clashed with club officials over club's transfer business
  • Robert Lewandowski rumoured to be central to issues behind the scenes
Lewandowski's future under Xavi was uncertain
Lewandowski's future under Xavi was uncertain / Fran Santiago/GettyImages

Xavi's desire to part ways with striker Robert Lewandowski contributed to his departure from Barcelona, a report has claimed.

Public comments about the club's transfer strategy ultimately saw Xavi relieved of his duties earlier this month, just weeks after Barcelona officials convinced him to reverse his decision to step down at the end of the season.

While Xavi's comments are believed to be at the heart of the dispute, SPORT claim that his desire to sign a new striker to replace Lewandowski played a huge role in his exit.

It is claimed that Xavi and his staff felt 35-year-old Lewandowski was no longer a good fit at the top of his team and instead wanted a youngster striker with more energy and an ability to involve himself in the team's build-up.

Xavi is also said to have taken issue with Lewandowski's attitude towards younger players behind the scenes, believing he was not a suitable mentor at a club which focuses on developing homegrown talents.

Robert Lewandowski, Vitor Roque
Lewandowski & Roque could have both left Barca / Soccrates Images/GettyImages

President Joan Laporta and his associates were, therefore, left disappointed to see Xavi so publicly dismiss Vitor Roque, who ESPN claim the boss actually wanted to offload if he remainded this summer.

Roque and Lewandowski were both being lined up for summer exits, while Xavi also did not want Barcelona to retain the services of loanees Joao Felix and Joao Cancelo.

Xavi admitted publicly that the Barcelona squad needed several signings to be able to compete in both La Liga and the Champions League, challenging the club to finance another expensive summer despite their well-known financial issues.

Taking his place will be former Germany and Bayern Munich boss Hansi Flick, who coached Lewandowski to 83 goals in just 71 games during his time in the German capital.