Xavi: Guardiola stopped me from joining Bayern in 2008

The Spain international has revealed that the Bavarians made a ‘serious’ approach for his services but that he is now glad that he was persuaded to remain in Catalunya

Xavi has revealed that current Bayern Munich boss Pep Guardiola stopped him from leaving Barcelona for the German side in 2008.

Fresh from helping Spain lift the European Championship that summer, the midfielder was approached by the Bavarians and actually held preliminary talks over a move to the Allianz Arena.

However, Xavi explains that Guardiola, who taken charge of Barca that summer, persuaded him to remain in Catalunya.

“It was pretty serious,” Xavi says of the proposed transfer in an interview with El Mundo Deportivo. “There was even a meeting with a coach of Bayern.

“But Pep grabbed me and told me that I could not go; that what he had in mind for the club revolved around a group of certain players who could not leave.

“It was a good decision because my desire now is to retire at Barca.”

Indeed, Xavi has played down talk of a move to MLS to link up with former Blaugrana team-mate Thierry Henry at New York Red Bulls.

“Nobody has offered me anything,” the 33-year-old insisted. “I know nothing of the interest from New York. Henry has not called me and I have not spoken to him. I don’t even have his phone number!”

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