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‘A heart with legs’ - Xavi pays tribute to Barcelona defender Jordi Alba

Joan Laporta has also said thanks to the left-back

Valencia CF v FC Barcelona - La Liga Santander Photo by Jose Breton/Pics Action/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Barcelona coach Xavi paid tribute to Jordi Alba during Thursday’s farewell ceremony for the left-back.

The manager made it clear just how much Alba means to him and highlighted how important he’s been on and off the pitch during his own career.

“He’s a heart with legs, he has a giant heart. He helped a lot to get me back to Barça and I’m very grateful. I congratulate you, your career has been extraordinary,” he said.

“And when I think of Jordi Alba, a smile comes to mind. I love him very much and I’ve learned a lot from him.”

President Joan Laporta also expressed his gratitude, not least because of Alba’s willingness to help the club financially.

“In addition to everything that has been said, you have shown your great commitment at this time when you are helping the club financially,” he said.

“Few people or football professionals are capable of doing this.

“Jordi, on his own initiative, of course has a good contract, which he has earned, he will continue his career because he still has a few years left, but he has had this deference, out of Barcelonismo, to help the club financially. He has given up an important part of his salary.”

Alba’s decision to leave comes ahead of a summer where Barca need to register new contracts for some key players and are also trying to bring Lionel Messi back to the club.

Xavi has already confirmed the club will not sign a replacement and will go with Alejandro Balde and Marcos Alonso at left-back for next season.

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