The latest word stemming from the Spanish media on Thursday suggests that FC Barcelona boss Xavi Hernandez has come to the decision to keep hold of the oft-criticised Sergi Roberto beyond next summer.
CL hopes alive and well
Spanish tactician Xavi of course oversaw his 2nd outing since securing a long-awaited return to Catalunya on Tuesday night.
After scraping past RCD Espanyol in a fiery La Liga derby clash this past weekend, the Blaugrana turned their attentions towards matters on the continent, in a Champions League showdown with Portuguese giants Benfica.
Barca headed into proceedings aware that a much-improved display would be required this time round, after slipping to an alarming 3-0 defeat at the hands of Benfica during the prior meeting between the sides back in September.
And though their ensuing showing over the course of the 90 minutes could hardly be described as vintage, the Catalans, in the end, did enough to secure a hard-fought share of the spoils.
Xavi’s side, in turn, remain 2nd in the Group E table, two points clear of their latest opponents with one round of fixtures to play.
One member of Barca’s squad to have played no part since the arrival of the club’s new boss, however, is of course Sergi Roberto.
The versatile Spaniard remains on the sidelines with a thigh issue at present, albeit no doubt hopeful of adding to his haul of nine La Liga appearances on the season in the very near future.
And, if the latest word doing the rounds in the media on Thursday is anything to go by, then such a development appears altogether likely.
This comes with claims beginning to mount that Xavi is not only a firm believer in Roberto’s talents, but even wants the 29-year-old to remain with the club for the foreseeable future.
As per a report from the reliable TV3, cited by Diario Sport, the tactician has informed the board at the Camp Nou that he wants the renewal of Roberto’s contract to be finalised as soon as possible.
The right-back’s current deal is due to expire next summer, with previous murmurs in the media having gone as far as to suggest that Roberto could be allowed to move on for nothing.
Such claims, however, were evidently some way wide of the mark.
In turn, negotiations between club and player are expected to resume in short order, with a view to Roberto putting pen to paper on terms through 2024.
↪️ El entrenador del FC Barcelona quiere recuperar al polivalente jugador azulgrana
📝 Sergi Roberto finaliza contrato el 30 de junio de 2022 y tiene una cláusula de 500 milloneshttps://t.co/PXO4XgbLCN
— Diario SPORT (@sport) November 25, 2021