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Xavi Hernandez: biography

Xavi is a Spanish footballer who plays for FC Barcelona, as well as the Spanish National team. He is a central midfielder who has spent his entire 13 year career with the Catalan club.

Beginnings

Xavier Hernandez I Creus was born on 25 January 1980 in Terrassa, Barcelona, although he is better known as simply Xavi. He came through Barcelona’s La Masia youth system and made his professional debut on 18 August 1998 in the Super Cup Final. Xavi’s performances for the first team were limited until the 1999-00 season when he solidified his place in the team’s midfield.

Career

2004-2006 season His strong performances led to him being named Barcelona’s vice-captain in 2004. The following season he tore the ligaments in his left knee and missed five months of action. He was on the substitute’s bench as Barcelona beat Arsenal to win the 2006 UEFA Champions League. Later performances Xavi was a crucial part of Barcelona’s treble winning side in 2008-09, which included a particularly impressive performance as he assisted four goals in a 6-2 El Clasico league victory over Real Madrid. His performances in the Champions League were particularly impressive as Barcelona beat Manchester United 2-0 in the final and he was named man of the match. Nominations In 2010, he was named as one of three finalists for the FIFA Ballon d’Or, along with his teammates Andres Iniesta and Lionel Messi, with Xavi finishing second behind Messi. Xavi has enjoyed a glittering international career to date. On 25 March 2011 he earned his 100th cap in a Euro 2012 qualifier against the Czech Republic. He has also contributed nine goals from midfield as the Spanish National team have enjoyed great success in recent years. Xavi was a member of the Spanish squads that won the UEFA European Football Championship in 2008 and the FIFA World Cup in 2010. He played particularly well in the 2010 World Cup as he led the tournament in pass completion average at 89% (he completed 599 out of 669 passes attempted).

Achievements

In his career, Xavi has won all the major trophies he could have with Barcelona and Spain. With Barcelona, he has won five Spanish league titles, one Spanish Cup, four Spanish Super Cups and two Champions Leagues. As a member of the Spain squad, he has won Euro 2008 and the 2010 World Cup, as well as earning himself a silver medal at the 2000 Olympics in Sydney. Individually, he has won numerous honours such as the World Soccer Player of the Year in 2010, the La Liga Spanish player of the year in 2005 and player of the tournament in Euro 2008.

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