Xavi will not be on a revenge mission when Barcelona face Inter in a “very important” UEFA Champions League showdown at San Siro on Tuesday.
Head coach Xavi was in the Barca team that knocked Inter out of the Champions League in the semi-finals in 2010.
The Blaugrana were beaten 3-1 in the first leg in Milan and were unable to overcome this deficit. They fell apart after winning 1-0 at Camp Nou against Jose Mourinho’s trophy-lifting men.
Xavi returns to the San Siro with both teams taking three points from their opening two Group C games, with Barca beating leaders Bayern Munich 2-0 last month.
And the former Spain midfielder is more motivated by the prospect of qualifying for the round of 16 than having to settle the scores.
He said: “I don’t feel like I want revenge. This time I came here as a coach. I remember we had to travel by bus [to Milan] because of the volcano, but they were a great team.
“It was difficult for us in the first game. We lost it here. It was a controversial draw, but that’s how it is. It’s a bitter memory for us, unfortunately.”
Inter boss Simone Inzaghi is under pressure as his side sit ninth in Serie A after defeats to Udinese and Roma.
But Xavi is not reading anything into the Nerazzurri’s poor form, knowing they have the quality to turn things around.
“It’s beside the point,” he said. “It’s Inter, a very strong team. They have a different system to anything we’ve come across so far.
“They play with two strikers, which you don’t see much in Spain. It’s a tough opponent, with good dynamics, but that has to be shown.”
Xavi added: “I’m pretty clear. Despite the size of the opponent, we’re clear that we want to dominate. It’s an important opponent. It’s the Champions League. It’s not a definitive game, but it’s very important.” for the future of the group.”
Inter have won just two of their 14 European matches against Barcelona, a 2-1 Inter-Cities Fairs Cup victory in January 1970 and a 3-1 Champions League triumph in April 2010.
However, Barca’s only two away wins against the Nerazzurri were separated by 60 years, when they won 4-2 in the Fairs Cup in September 1959 and 2-1 in the Champions League in December 2019.