If there’s one player who has a right to discuss the abilities of small, controlling midfielders it’s Xavi – probably the greatest no.6 of all time.
Barcelona have not been the same team without his genius and have let Real Madrid usurp them domestically and in Europe due to his absence.
So when Xavi waxes lyrical about a Liverpool transfer target, we listen.
Yesterday, it was confirmed by the Guardian that Liverpool are interested in Jean Michael Seri, Nice’s 26-year-old midfielder who stands at just 5ft. 5′ – but ran matches in Ligue 1 for fun last year.
He has a £33m release clause and has emerged as Jurgen Klopp’s ideal midfielder after we failed to purchase Naby Keita.
Here’s what Xavi has to say on him…
“When I was told that a player from Nice was called the ‘African Xavi’, I followed him very closely, inevitably,” he told Le Parisien.
“I did not know him and I was stunned: I haven’t seen such midfield talent for a while. [His] short game, long game, tactical intelligence, distance shooting, personality, game organisation…wow! He would go so well at Barça … He can play anywhere in the middle. Seri is fantastic. He has what is called Barcelona’s Barça DNA. Without any hesitation.”
When Xavi was told the Ivorian uses him as a reference point, the legendary Spaniard described it as an ‘honour’.
“Seriously? It is an honour ! I hope Barça sign him [this summer] because otherwise he will be worth double next year,” he concluded.
Barcelona have just signed former Spurs flop Paulinho instead, while Arsenal have to ‘sell before they can buy,’ leaving us frontrunners for Seri’s signature.
He suffers from a medical condition which makes it difficult for him to play in cold weather, so we’ll have to wait and see if Liverpool believe there’s a way around this.
Xavi though has undeniably sold us the benefits of the pint-sized midfielder – and we hope there’s a bid lodged soon!