Xavi’s team is not being affected by the Negreira scandal, despite the controversy surrounding the LaLiga leaders off the field
Barca head coach Xavi stated that the Negreira scandal that has enveloped the club off the pitch is not impacting his team’s performance. The club is currently being investigated by UEFA, and the prosecutors in Spain are pursuing corruption charges against them.
It is alleged that the club paid over €7 million to Jose Maria Enriquez Negreira’s company, who is a former vice-president of the refereeing committee in Spain.
Although LaLiga is unable to take action in response to the Negreira scandal due to the statute of limitations in Spain, UEFA is investigating the matter without any restrictions. On Monday, UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin emphasized the seriousness of the scandal.
Barcelona have denied any wrongdoing since and Xavi claims the case has not had an impact on his side.
Xavi emphasizes the importance of Camp Nou’s atmosphere
“Extra-sporting issues don’t go into the locker room. We talk about how to defend, how to attack. We are not talking about UEFA, nor Negreira,” he told a press conference ahead of the Copa del Rey semi-final second leg against Real Madrid.
“Barcelona are focused on the Cup. There is a Clasico. They will come wanting revenge and we want to show that we can win again. The Camp Nou has to be a pressure cooker.
“I listen very little [to outside comments] and we value from within. The president values it very much. If the boss is not happy, it matters what is said from outside.
“Nothing should divert us, tomorrow we can have a double joy: to beat Madrid and reach a final. Still, We are much better than last season.”
“The Camp Nou has to be a pressure cooker“– Xavi
Xavi declined to comment on the statement issued by Barcelona on Monday, which called for the resignation of LaLiga president Javier Tebas over alleged false claims related to the Negreira scandal.
“I don’t know him, we have greeted each other two three times, and I don’t have a clear opinion,” he added.
Barcelona hold a slender 1-0 advantage heading into Wednesday’s game but Madrid are still the favorites. Still, Xavi believes, saying: “When we have a two-legged game I have the feeling that it is very difficult. How long has it been since they lost a two-legged tie?”
“That’s why for me they are still the favorites despite the 0-1. They have more pressure than we do.
“Madrid can beat you perfectly. For me it is very even and they have a point that makes them favorites. they are used to coming back from matches.”