Xavi says he would find it hard to accept if Hector Bellerin were to re-sign for Barcelona.
Their interest in the Arsenal man has been made clear this summer, but the former midfield great believes that when a player turns his back on the club at an early age, that should preclude a return.
Despite the fact players like Cesc Fabregas and Gerard Pique have come back to the club – the defender in particular being a huge success – Xavi says that he can’t understand why players choose to leave at such an early age.
Speaking about Bellerin, he told SPORT, “I haven’t see him play a lot, but it’s difficult for me to accept a player that we already had.
“It can work out or not, but I would not sign players who leave. Why are their leaving at 16 or 17? It’s baffling to me, I don’t understand it.”
When it was put to him that there may be a clearer path to first team football at a club abroad, he was having none of that either.
“Playing in the first team has never been easy,” he said.
“I had a very difficult time getting there and becoming settled. But a player can’t leave during the development process.
“When I was 16 I didn’t want to leave. My idea was that I was in the best place and if Chelsea or United came in for me, I would have said no.”
A strong, principled stance there from the 37 year old who has been plying his trade in Qatar since 2015.
Still, he won’t have to worry about Bellerin for a while at least as he is going nowhere.