Transfer news: Manchester City target Barcelona star Xavi - but for their New York franchise

Manchester club want Spanish midfielder for the 2015 launch of their MLS franchise

Manchester City are reportedly keen to lure Barcelona's Xavi to Major League Soccer when they launch their New York City franchise in 2015.

By the time the new MLS side is launched, the Spanish star will be 35, with a year remaining on his contract, perfectly placed to become the franchise's marquee signing.

While in the past Xavi has always spoken of a desire to finish his illustrious playing career at the Nou Camp, last week he suggested that it could end elsewhere by saying:  “Being tied to Barcelona is a privilege, but I don’t know what will happen in the future.”

That comment prompted speculation that New York Red Bulls might be trying to snap up the Spaniard, using former team mate Thierry Henry to convince him.

However now it is understood that Manchester City are interested in beating their soon-to-be city rivals to the signature of Xavi as they look to launch their MLS club with a bang.

Both Man City's chief executive Ferran Soriano and director of football Txiki Begiristain know Xavi from their time at Barcelona and reportedly see him as the perfect man to launch the franchise they have invested more than £300m into.

However both Begiristain and Soriano have insisted that New York City manager Jason Kreis will choose which players he signs, providing they fit the club's style.

“We have a philosophy that we want to play, that we like and the people like, and after that, we sign the coach,” Begiristain said. “ After that, he is free.”

Soriano said: “These are broad concepts, but very strong. We would never choose a manager, whether it is Manuel Pellegrini in Manchester or Jason here, that would not believe in those pillars. On those pillars, he can build whatever he wants.”

Video: Fifa do not expect protests at World Cup 2014

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Turkey-Kurdish conflict: Obama's deal with Ankara is a betrayal of Syrian Kurds and may not even weaken Isis

US betrayal of old ally brings limited reward

Since the accord, the Turks have only waged war on Kurds while no US bomber has used Incirlik airbase, says Patrick Cockburn
VIPs gather for opening of second Suez Canal - but doubts linger over security

'A gift from Egypt to the rest of the world'

VIPs gather for opening of second Suez Canal - but is it really needed?
Jeremy Corbyn dresses abysmally. That's a great thing because it's genuine

Jeremy Corbyn dresses abysmally. That's a great thing because it's genuine

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, applauds a man who clearly has more important things on his mind
The male menopause and intimations of mortality

Aches, pains and an inkling of mortality

So the male menopause is real, they say, but what would the Victorians, 'old' at 30, think of that, asks DJ Taylor
Man Booker Prize 2015: Anna Smaill - How can I possibly be on the list with these writers I have idolised?

'How can I possibly be on the list with these writers I have idolised?'

Man Booker Prize nominee Anna Smaill on the rise of Kiwi lit
Bettany Hughes interview: The historian on how Socrates would have solved Greece's problems

Bettany Hughes interview

The historian on how Socrates would have solved Greece's problems
Art of the state: Pyongyang propaganda posters to be exhibited in China

Art of the state

Pyongyang propaganda posters to be exhibited in China
Mildreds and Vanilla Black have given vegetarian food a makeover in new cookbooks

Vegetarian food gets a makeover

Long-time vegetarian Holly Williams tries to recreate some of the inventive recipes in Mildreds and Vanilla Black's new cookbooks
The haunting of Shirley Jackson: Was the gothic author's life really as bleak as her fiction?

The haunting of Shirley Jackson

Was the gothic author's life really as bleak as her fiction?
Bill Granger recipes: Heading off on holiday? Try out our chef's seaside-inspired dishes...

Bill Granger's seaside-inspired recipes

These dishes are so easy to make, our chef is almost embarrassed to call them recipes
Ashes 2015: Tourists are limp, leaderless and distinctly UnAustralian

Tourists are limp, leaderless and distinctly UnAustralian

A woefully out-of-form Michael Clarke embodies his team's fragile Ashes campaign, says Michael Calvin
Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza

Andrew Grice: Inside Westminster

Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza
HMS Victory: The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

Exclusive: David Keys reveals the research that finally explains why HMS Victory went down with the loss of 1,100 lives
Survivors of the Nagasaki atomic bomb attack: Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism

'I saw people so injured you couldn't tell if they were dead or alive'

Nagasaki survivors on why Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism
Jon Stewart: The voice of Democrats who felt Obama had failed to deliver on his 'Yes We Can' slogan, and the voter he tried hardest to keep onside

The voter Obama tried hardest to keep onside

Outgoing The Daily Show host, Jon Stewart, became the voice of Democrats who felt the President had failed to deliver on his ‘Yes We Can’ slogan. Tim Walker charts the ups and downs of their 10-year relationship on screen