Luis Enrique responds to reports he could replace Xavi at Barcelona | Football

The Barca head coach is stepping down at the end of the season (Picture: Getty)

Luis Enrique says he would welcome a return to the Barcelona dugout in the future but is committed to current club Paris Saint-Germain.

The 53-year-old, who won the treble with Barca back in 2015, is currently gearing up for a Champions League quarter-final against his old club amid growing suggestions he is sporting director Deco’s preferred choice to succeed Xavi.

Luis Enrique only moved to Paris last summer but he has made a strong start to life at the Parc des Princes, with PSG currently 12 points clear at the top of Ligue 1.

In a typically forthright Q&A on his Twitch channel, he did not distance himself from a potential return to Camp Nou, though a move this summer is unlikely given his commitments to PSG.

‘I have always said that I would like to [return] but the reality is that it is very complicated for paths to cross,’ said the Spanish coach.

‘It is difficult to coincide in time, this summer from what Xavi has said they will need another coach but I have a contract and my rule is to continue and be faithful to the people who trust me.’

He added: ‘Last summer I was available but they had a coach, this summer they need a coach, it’s difficult for it all to line up.’

PSG boss Luis Enrique

Luis Enrique takes on Barca next month in the Champions League (Picture: Getty)

Luis Enrique also revealed that he spoke with two Premier League sides – thought to be Chelsea and Tottenham – before joining PSG, but ‘they did not call me back’.

He also spoke about the prospect of taking on Barca in the Champions League and suggested it was almost a win-win situation, saying that if ‘they eliminate us, at least it’s my team’.

‘I’m Cule and Sporting [Gijon] for life,’ he added. ‘On an emotional level for me it is going to be complicated, but I owe it to the club that has decided to support me.’

Reacting to Xavi’s claims that the Barca job is the most high-pressured in world football, he said: ‘I have heard Xavi say that because he is a Cule and a Catalan, for him Barca is the most difficult bench.

‘But the truth is that Real Madrid, PSG, Bayern Munich, Manchester United… they are all clubs that have a different scale and are clubs subject to great pressure when it comes to managing anything, any scuffle is news.’

This week, Barca president Joan Laporta actually hinted that Xavi had not fully committed to leaving Camp Nou just yet, saying: ‘We are not going to touch anything until Xavi makes the decision.’

If he does leave, Barcelona will be competing with the likes of Bayern Munich and Liverpool in the managerial market this summer, with former Germany boss Hansi Flick currently the bookies’ favourite to succeed Xavi.

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