Xavi believes Barcelona’s financial problems will be the cause if Manchester City win the race to sign Erling Haaland.
According to reports, City will announce the signing of Haaland this week, and defending Premier League champions are ready to use their 75 million euro release clause.
Barca and Real Madrid are said to be keenly interested in the Borussia Dortmund striker, who has scored 28 goals in 29 games in all competitions this season.
But Barca are still operating under financial constraints that led to Lionel Messi leaving before the start of the campaign.
And those are the limits, according to Xavi, that look set to take Haaland to the Etihad Stadium rather than Camp Nou.
Xavi told a news conference ahead of Barca’s LaLiga match against Celta Vigo on Tuesday: “It is illegal, if so, you are asking me again …
“If I take him out for us? I will not lie to you, our economic situation is very difficult.”
Asked if Haaland prefers money over a particular job, Xavi replied: “I will not say that. I will not despise the sports programs of other clubs.
“The city has a lot of trophies and is competing at a high level. If what you are saying happens it would be because of our financial problems.”
Although Xavi did not elaborate on the club’s plans for the transfer window, he acknowledged that the squad needed to strengthen Barca by 12 points after the newly crowned champions Madrid.
“This year is not good so we have to be strong,” said Xavi.
“Everyone who comes to welcome people must leave, the situation is not easy, it is one of the toughest in the history of the party. But we must strengthen ourselves. There is evidence and everyone has seen it.
“We have tested you in football. Then there is the economy. We have made it clear what we want next year and we will try to do everything we can.”
One player Xavi is determined to keep the books of winger Ousmane Dembele, whose contract expires at the end of June.
Dembele has recorded 11 LaLiga assistants this season, who has been heavily linked with a move to Karim Benzema, and has been linked with a number of top clubs.
“The team already knows my idea,” Xavi told Dembele.
“I would like him to stay. He has helped us and, if he stays and refreshes, he will help us. He has done that this season.”