Several managers have been mentioned in connection with Barcelona’s hunt for a replacement for Xavi Hernandez this summer. Interestingly, the Blaugrana have been sensational ever since the Spaniard announced his summer exit.

Perhaps the closing games of the season have energized the squad since every player is battling for a spot on the team once again. Surprising as it may seem, they are still in with a chance of winning La Liga and the UEFA Champions League.

As a result, the Blaugrana have reportedly made it plain that they want the 44-year-old to stay. This is still a no-brainer for the club, says Fabrizio Romano.

“Barcelona have clear intentions in any case. Laporta wants to wait for Xavi, hoping for him to change his mind. Barca will wait again for Xavi, for sure. Then if he decides to confirm that he wants to leave Barca will consider other candidates, but they’re not advancing in talks with any other coach as they want to wait for Xavi.”

Young Andoni Iraola resume impresses Barcelona

Whether Joan Laporta and Deco successfully convince Xavi to continue working on his idea is an open issue. Consequently, Barcelona is keeping tabs on how Andoni Iraola is doing at Bournemouth in the Premier League, Sport says.

Among Europe’s younger managers, the 41-year-old is among the most regarded. The Athletic Club was his home for most of his playing career. Having played for New York City for one season, however, his playing days in the United States came to an end.

To get into management, Iraola took over Cyprus’s AEK Larnaca in 2018. However, after signing with Rayo Vallecano in 2020 and leading the Spanish club to La Liga in each of his three seasons there, his worth skyrocketed.

Following his summer switch to Bournemouth, the Spanish coach has maintained his meteoric rise to fame. For the most part, the 2023-24 season got off to a slow start under the Spanish manager, who took over in the summer.

But recently, they’ve been on a tear, as the Cherries have surpassed all Premier League clubs in points since March arrived. That’s why Barcelona has reportedly been made aware of his development with the Premier League club.

Long-time target?

The Basque coach had previously improved Rayo Vallecano and the Camp Nou outfit is reportedly pleased enough to be monitoring his progress in England as well. The 41-year-old led Rayo to remarkable 12th and 11th-place finishes.

They also achieved a Copa del Rey semi-final and many illustrious triumphs against Real Madrid and Barcelona. He achieved this promotion via the play-offs.

There was no accident when sporting director Deco named Iraola as one of the “top managers” in a recent interview. If Iraola keeps up his current rate of success, elite clubs will be vying for his signature in no time.