- Copy link
Current Barça coach Xavi Hernández was one of the most important players at FC Barcelona in the Club's history, playing a crucial role in one of the best teams in the history of the game.
The midfielder from Terrassa won the hearts and minds of football fans all over the world thanks to his performances for both Barça and the Spanish national team, winning a total of 35 trophies, 32 with the blaurganes and three with Spain.
Today marks 25 years since his official debut as a first team player which came on 18 August 1998 in the first leg of the Spanish Super Cup final in the Lluís Sitjar stadium in Palma. Xavi had already made his first appearance for the Club in a Copa Catalunya game at Lleida in March earlier that year.
Goalscoring debut in Mallorca
After the debut against Lleida, Xavi's official first game for Barça came when he was just 18 years of age. Coach Louis Van Gaal gave him the call the day before the game in Mallorca. On his debut Xavi celebrated by scoring with a well placed effort from the edge of the box. Nevertheless, it was not enough to help the blaugranes avoid defeat as Mallorca took a 2-1 victory in the Lluís Sitjar stadium.
The young midfielder shared the pitch with blaugrana legends such as Rivaldo and other figures who would also go to coach the first team later on in Luis Enrique and Sergi Barjuan.
A wonderful career
Xavi Hernández spent 17 seasons with the first team, making 869 appearances and scoring 97 goals. The midfielder formed part of a legendary trio in the centre of the pitch alongside Andrés Iniesta and Sergio Busquets.
As a player Xavi ended up winning 32 trophies with Barça: four Champions League titles, eight league titles, three Copas del Rey, six Spanish Super Cups, two European Super Cups, two Club World Cups, six Copas de Catalunya and one Catalan Super Cup.
On an individual level he was named Best Midfielder in La Liga in 2009, 2010 and 2011, Best Midfielder in the Champions League in 2009, Player of the Tournament in the 2008 European Championships as well as coming third in 2010 and 2011 in the vote for the Ballon d'Or.
With the national side he claimed World Cup victory in 2010 in South Africa following Spain's win over the Netherlands in the final as well the European Championship crown in 2008 and 2012.
- Copy link