Soccer

Barcelona's Xavi held talks with Bayern in 2008

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BARCELONA, Spain (AP)

Barcelona midfielder Xavi Hernandez says he held talks with Bayern Munich before former coach Pep Guardiola convinced him to remain at his boyhood club.

The Spain midfielder says after a poor 2007-08 season he met with a Bayern coach but Guardiola ''told me I couldn't go, that I was one of the players Barca revolved around and that I couldn't leave the club.''

Xavi, who could make his 700th appearance Thursday at Getafe, was quoted as telling sports daily El Mundo Deportivo that his desire is to retire at the Catalan club, where he has played since 1998.

The 33-year-old Xavi, who has helped Barcelona win 23 trophies, says reports of a move to North America's Major League Soccer are unfounded.

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