Xavi Hernandez is set for his first game as Barcelona manager against Espanyol this weekend. There is excitement among Barcelona supporters to see what Xavi can do with this talented but young squad. As a Cryuff and Guardiola disciple, Xavi is expected to start with the 4-3-3 formation. He has experimented with different formations at Al Sadd including a back three formation. Under him, Barcelona will be expected to return to a high pressing, possession based attacking football.
Barcelona’s predicted 4-3-3 formation against Espanyol
Xavi has to deal with significant injury problems at the moment with Sergio Aguero, Ousmane Dembele, Ansu Fati and Martin Braithwaite are all out. This will force him to play out of form Coutinho and out of position Gavi among the front three to partner Memphis Depay. To play high intensity attacking football, Xavi might be forced to replace certain aging players like Sergio Busquets and Gerrad Pique but it remains be seen how much Barcelona will back Xavi in the transfer market considering their dire financial situation.