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Xavi - Spain and Barcelona Midfielder
His Words on: Technical Ability. Passing. Vision. Development
 

"Some youth academies worry about winning, we worry about education. You see a kid who lifts his head up, who plays the pass first time, pum, and you think, 'Yep, he'll do. Bring him in, coach him. Our model was imposed by Johan Cruyff; it's an Ajax model. It' all about rondos [piggy in the middle]. Rondo, rondo, rondo. Every. Single. Day. It's the best exercise there is. You learn responsibility and not to lose the ball. If you lose the ball, you go in the middle. Pum-pum-pum-pum, always one touch. If you go in the middle, it's humiliating, the rest applaud and laugh at you.

Talent has to be the priority. Technical ability. Always, always. Sure, you can win without it but it's talent that makes the difference. Look at the teams: Juventus, who makes the difference? Krasic. Del Piero. Liverpool? Gerrard, or Torres before. Talento. Talento. When you look at players and ask yourself who's the best: talento. Cesc, Nasri, Ryan Giggs - that guy is a joy, incredible. Looking back, I loved John Barnes and Chris Waddle was buenísimo. [Open-mouthed, eyes gleaming] Le Tissier! Although their style was different I liked Roy Keane and Paul Ince together, too. That United team was great - my English team. If I'd gone anywhere, it would have been there.

Think quickly, look for spaces. That's what I do: look for spaces. All day. I'm always looking. All day, all day. [Xavi starts gesturing as if he is looking around, swinging his head]. Here? No. There? No. People who haven't played don't always realize how hard that is. Space, space, space. It's like being on the PlayStation. If the defender's here, play it there. I see the space and pass. That's what I do.