After all the fanfare about Steven Gerrard’s final match at Anfield and his custom adidas Predator’s for the occasion, Barcelona’s Xavi Hernandez went about his business in the penultimate La Liga match in a much quieter fashion but also wearing a custom adidas Predator to celebrate the occasion.
The cleat showcase the Barcelona colors of red and yellow with a sunburst effect as well as pops of blue on the tops of the studs. #6 was on both cleats and ‘XAVI’ was written on the insole.
Xavi came on in the 82nd minute for longtime teammate Andres Iniesta and played out the match as Barca defeated Atletico Madrid 1-0 to take the La Liga title. Saturday’s match against Deportivo la Coruna will close out the midfielder’s final La Liga campaign with the Catalan club. The completion of the La Liga campaign will not end his time with the club as they still have the Copa del Rey final against Athletic Club on May 30 and the UEFA Champions League final against Juventus on June 6.
It has been an impressive run for the 35-year-old. He signed with the club as an 11-year-old in 1991 and made his senior team debut in 1998. He along with Iniesta were keys to implementing Barca’s tiki-taka style that served them.
Xavi’s 505 and counting appearances for Barca have yielded an impressive trophy haul of 23 trophies that include 3 UEFA Champions League titles and 8 La Liga titles. These obviously do not include his numbers from his career with the Spanish national team which add 133 caps and an additional 3 pieces of silverware with the 2010 FIFA World Cup title to go along with the 2008 and 2012 European Championships.
The special custom cleats are not the only tribute that Xavi will be part of before joining Qatari side Al-Saad. The Spanish Football League has agreed to present the La Liga trophy to Barca’s captain this weekend, Xavi, after the match against Deportivo. The trophy presentation for winning the league is traditionally made at the first match of the following season.
The custom adidas Predator for Xavi unfortunately will not be available for retail. The special cleat was only made for the player with some extra pairs made for his family. Xavi was thought to be only wearing them for 1 match but we will keep our eyes open this weekend.