Al Sadd say they are still in negotiations to sign Barcelona veteran Xavi, despite the club’s coach earlier claiming the midfielder had already agreed to join the club.
The 35-year-old was pictured on Abdullah Al-Berik’s Instagram page with the club’s sporting director, Muhammed Ghoulam, on Saturday.
An accompanying caption read: “Al Sadd have just managed to sign with Barcelona captain Xavi, and this is an image of him wih the sport director Muhammed Ghoulam.. May Allah help you.”
However, a statement on Al Sadd’s website stated that no deal was yet in place, though negotiations are continuing over the weekend.
“Al Sadd confirms the latest news about the club’s interest in signing the Spanish star Xavi Hernandez to the club is still under negotiation,” read a statement
“On the same matter, the FC Barcelona player is currently in Doha with his family to know more about the country he would live in if he were to decide to join the club.
“The club would make any further and official announcements only if further developments take place.”
Goal understands a deal will be announced on Sunday, bringing to an end Xavi’s stay at Camp Nou, where he has spent his entire career.
The former Spain international was reportedly in talks with Qatari side Al Arabi and MLS franchise New York City FC before the start of the season but he opted to remain with Luis Enrique’s side for another year.
Xavi joined Barcelona as a youth back in 1991 and, after cutting his teeth in the club’s reserve team, became a first-team regular in the 1999-2000 season. In total, the midfielder has won seven La Liga titles and three Champions Leagues.
He is set to follow in the footsteps of former Barcelona players such as Pep Guardiola, Gabri Garcia, Frank de Boer, Ronald de Boer, Christophe Dugarry, Romario and Sonny Anderson, who all made the move to Qatar as well at some stage of their career.