Xavi claims he idolised Southampton legend Matt Le Tissier as a child

Xavi idol Matt Le Tissier Southampton
Matt Le Tissier spent 16 seasons at Southampton

Former Barcelona captain and club legend Xavi Hernandez has revealed that his childhood idol was a player not from Barcelona, not even Spain. In fact, it was none other than Premier League legend Matt Le Tissier.

Le Tissier was one of the first legends of the Premier League simply because of the way he played. He was a treat to watch and scored goals that ranged from the sublime to the equally outrageous. Be it from inside the box or from long range, in the face of two defenders or four, the Southampton star always found a way to astound his opponents and fans alike with jaw-dropping skill by scoring Goal of the Season contenders with alarming regularity.

After he burst on to the scene in 1990 and won the PFA Young Player of the Year award, Le Tissier spent a total of 16 seasons with the Saints – 10 of which were in the Premier League which was formed in 1992. The attacking midfielder scored 209 goals for the club on the south coast of England, including 47 penalties from 48 attempts!

Xavi, now at Qatar side Al Sadd SC, was brought up in Barcelona’s La Masia ever since he joined in 1991 at the age of 11. Playing for a club as big as Barcelona, it comes as a surprise that he would idolise a player from England rather than the technically adept footballers in the Spanish peninsula.

But Xavi had his reasons.

We were obsessed with Le Tissier: Xavi

According to The Sun, Xavi explained how he was introduced to Le Tissier and his exploits in the Premier League.

Xavi Qatar Al Sadd
Xavi currently plays in Qatar for Al Sadd

“In Catalonia, there used to be a half-hour programme every Monday where they’d show the best goals from the Premier League,” Xavi explained.

“Every week, Matt Le Tissier would be on the show. I’m talking outrageous, sickening goals.

“Straight in the top corner, left-foot flick and then right over a defender and score against Newcastle.”

Xavi continued to praise the former English footballer and was impressed with his loyalty to Southampton in spite of having the talent to play for any to club in Europe.

“We used to say: ‘This guy, Le Tissier, is outrageous and he never goes to a big team. He stays at Southampton. It's incredible. He could play for anyone.’

“Our whole house was obsessed with him.”

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Edited by Staff Editor
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