“To go one better than Guillermo Amor, who was a pioneer at La Masia, is a real honour.” – Xavi.
On the weekend that Xavi confirmed himself as the record title holder (18 trophies) in Barcelona history, The Sun continued the English media’s propensity to downplay the quality of Barcelona’s midfield legend.
Xavi’s medal haul now reads: “6 La Liga titles, 5 Spanish Super Cups, 3 Champions Leagues, 2 European Super Cups, 1 Spanish Cup and 1 World Club Cup with Barcelona.”
This of course, does not include international honours such as Euro 2008 and World Cup 2010. And Xavi looks set to add to his club medal haul in 2011-2012 with Pep Guardiola’s all-conquering Barcelona side.
On Friday, Spurs manager Harry Redknapp said: “I’d say their [Manchester City’s squad is stronger than Barcelona’s, yeah. It’s an amazing squad.Â To bring in players like they have… Sergio Aguero, Carlos Tevez, Edin Dzeko. Look at that strikeforce.Â They don’t have Lionel Messi but they have two players in every position almost â€” top, top-class players.”
In Saturday’s print edition, The Sun decided to justify their columnist’s claim by comparing the value of the two squads and came out with some ridiculous figures.
Valuing Gerard Pique at 15 million euros was bad enough. Thiago Alcantara at 13 million also massively under values one of the top young players in Europe, if not the world. And you could also argue that Sergio Busquets is worth at least double his 20 million euro valuation.
The real shocker comes with Xavi, a legend of the modern game. Sure, he is 31 and is rested more often these days due to an incredible work load over recent seasons but to say he is worth just 25 million euros is criminal.
For comparison, the likes of James Milner (27 million euros), Gareth Barry (26 million euros) and Nigel De Jong (27 million euros) are all rated of higher value by The Sun.
Pictures of the Barcelona and Manchester City Sun values are after the jump below.
Of course, this is not the first time that the English press have downplayed Xavi’s genius. In January 2009, the Daily Mail ran their infamous headline: “The best players of the world (and Xavi): Ronaldo crowned king of football.” Link here.
The daily transfer lies from Fleet Street are one thing, but a failure to appreciate a current legend of the game and one of the true greats is scandalous.