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Gabi Fernandez: Xavi Hernandez convinced me to join Al-Sadd

Gabi Fernandez has said new Al-Sadd teammate Xavi Hernandez convinced him to leave Atletico Madrid and play in Qatar.

Madrid-born Gabi played 413 games for Atletico in two different spells, winning six trophies including the La Liga title and two Europa Leagues.

He has agreed a two-year contract with Al-Sadd with an option for a further 12 months, with the deal reportedly worth a total of €19 million.

Speaking to the Al-Sadd website, the 34-year-old said he was looking forward to winning more...

Xavi Hernandez signs new contract to play for Al-Sadd into his forties

Former Barcelona midfielder Xavi Hernandez has penned a new two-year deal with Al-Sadd to extend his stay in Qatar until at least 2020.

Xavi, 38, is currently in his third season at the club after signing from Barca on a free transfer in 2015.

By the time his latest deal expires he will be 40, by which point he hopes to have completed his coaching badges.

"I am happy to keep on being a part of the Al-Sadd family for two more years," Xavi told the club's official website.

"I am delighted to be at...

 By Ian Holyman

Xavi Hernandez not ready for retirement, hopes to play into 2019

Al-Sadd's Xavi Hernandez
Former Spain and Barcelona midfielder Xavi Hernandez wants to continue playing into 2019.

Xavi Hernandez will play on through the end of the year and the former Spain international has told AFP he may even extend his career beyond then.

Xavi, 38, has been playing for Al-Sadd in Qatar since leaving Barcelona in 2015. He had been expected to retire at the end of the season, but the 2010 World Cup and four-time UEFA Champions League winner will keep going.

"I have decided to continue at least six months more," Xavi said. "Because it depends on my physical condition. Maybe in December I...

 By John Duerden

Wesley Sneijder learning ropes of Qatar Stars League from Xavi

Xavi and Wesley Sneijder, who faced each other in the 2010 World Cup final, now battle in the Qatar Stars League.

Fans in Qatar may still be coming to terms with the fact that the national team will not be at the 2018 World Cup -- they didn't come close to qualifying -- but there is some comfort. Four years before the 2022 edition comes to the country, there is a chance to see two of the finest midfielders of the modern game up close and personal. In January Wesley Sneijder joined Al Gharafa, thereby joining Xavi in the Qatar Stars League.

"Xavi is a legend," said Sneijder in January before the two met on...

 By Ian Holyman

Xavi: I want to become Barcelona coach when my playing career ends

Xavi has hit the ground running in Qatar with Al Sadd.
Xavi Hernandez joined Al Sadd from Barcelona in 2015.

Barcelona legend Xavi has told L'Equipe he hopes to follow in the footsteps of former teammates Pep Guardiola and Luis Enrique and coach the club one day.

Xavi helped Barcelona to three La Liga titles and two Champions League wins in a breathtaking four-year spell under Guardiola.

He then won a further Champions League and La Liga title under Luis Enrique in his final season before moving to Qatari club Al-Sadd in 2015.

The midfielder intends to play until 2018 but has plans for when he hangs up...