Stats prove PSG's Luis Enrique has more Barcelona DNA than Xavi Hernandez

PSG manager Luis Enrique | Imago

Stats prove PSG's Luis Enrique has more Barcelona DNA than Xavi Hernandez

Ayoola Kelechi 23:44 - 16.04.2024

Luis Enrique proved once and for all that he embodies the Barcelona DNA far more than current head coach Xavi Hernandez

In a bold and intriguing statement ahead of Paris Saint-Germain's faceoff against Barcelona, Luis Enrique, the former Barcelona manager, made a confident claim that he embodies the Catalans' style of play better than Xavi Hernandez, the current Blaugrana boss.

Luis Enrique's Assertion about Barcelona DNA

With a historic background between Luis Enrique and Barcelona, the upcoming match promised to be a clash of tactical minds and football philosophies. Paris Saint-Germain emerged victorious with a 6-4 aggregate win after a resounding 4-1 victory at the Blaugrana’s Olympic stadium.

When questioned about potentially leveraging inside knowledge against Barcelona, Luis Enrique expressed his respect for Xavi but boldly asserted his superiority in embodying the essence of the Catalan club's style of play.

"Without a doubt, it’s me," Luis Enrique confidently stated. "It’s not an opinion, look at the statistics, in terms of possession, chances, pressing, trophies… Others might have a different opinion, but it’s definitely me."

Stats Speak Louder

Luis Enrique backed up his claim with statistics that demonstrated his team's resemblance to Barcelona's style of play over the two legs. His Paris Saint-Germain side outperformed Barcelona in key aspects of the game, showcasing a dominance reminiscent of the Blaugrana's glory days.

Barcelona, under Xavi's management, experienced their two lowest possession percentages in the UEFA Champions League since Opta began detailed data collection in 2003-04. In the first leg at the Parc des Princes, Barcelona had only 41.4% possession. Their possession dwindled even further in the second leg on home turf, reaching a record-low of 32.7% possession in the Champions League.

Despite Xavi Hernandez's association with Barcelona's iconic style of play as a former player and current manager, Luis Enrique's assertion backed by statistics highlights the nuanced debate surrounding the identity and embodiment of Barcelona's football philosophy. As both managers continue to shape their respective teams, the clash of football ideologies remains a fascinating aspect of the beautiful game.