Why Xavi Hernandez is likely safe as Barcelona manager

Despite the poor performances, culminating in the 4-1 defeat to Real Madrid, Barcelona is unlikely to sack Xavi Hernandez.
Real Madrid CF v FC Barcelona - Super Copa de España Final
Real Madrid CF v FC Barcelona - Super Copa de España Final / Yasser Bakhsh/GettyImages

Following Barcelona's 4-1 drubbing in the Spanish Super Cup final against Real Madrid, the focus quickly turned to Xavi Hernandez and his culpability.

On X, formerly known as Twitter, there were multiple calls for Xavi to get the sack. While social media usually isn't the best measure for, well, anything, those calls have been growing louder as the season has progressed.

"The upcoming days will be hard with a lot of criticism, but you have to accept it," Xavi said in his press conference following the match.

Much of the criticism will focus on not only his role in the loss but in the performance of the team throughout the season. The conclusion many will draw, or have drawn, is Barcelona need to sack Xavi.

In any other club, and every other manager, the sack would have already come. But given Barcelona's financial situation, it's unlikely to happen.

Historically, Barcelona does not like sacking managers during the middle of the season. However, they've done it to their two previous managers, Ernesto Valverde and Ronald Koeman. The former was sacked after a Spanish Super Cup semifinal loss to Atletico Madrid.

Because they would need to pay Xavi the remainder of his contract, not to mention they recently signed an extension, firing him doesn't seem like an option. His status as a club legend also plays to his favor, though that credit is running low at the moment.

Publicly, at least, Xavi still has the backing from those in charge.

"This question makes no sense," said Deco, Barcelona sporting director, when asked about the future of Xavi. "The manager has the confidence of everyone. One loss changes nothing in that aspect."

Deco may be towing the company line but pictures say a thousand words and the image making the rounds is one of Barcelona president Joan Laporta looking none too pleased during the match.

Not only can Barcelona not afford to sack Xavi, even if they were in a position to do so, as it stands, there is no one out there they can feasibly hire.

The most popular name bandied about has been Hansi Flick. Flick is currently available after being sacked from the German National Team. Again, Barcelona don't have the resources to present an attractive offer to Flick. Plus, he may not want to take a job midway through the season.

Barça Atletic manager Rafael Marquez would be next in line should Xavi get sacked but the same problems would arise as with Xavi. He is relatively inexperienced and is only in his second season with Barça Atletic.

Xavi Hernandez apologizes to fans following El Clasico humiliation. Xavi Hernandez apologizes to fans following El Clasico humiliation. dark. Next

Those wanting Xavi sacked are going to be left wanting. The inability to pay him off and the lack of viable alternatives are the only things keeping him in the job. For better or worse, he's going to see off the rest of the season. Once the season ends, however, his status as manager will be very much up in the air.