Xavi hits out at 'unjust' Barcelona transfer ban

The midfielder thinks Fifa has been unfair with their sanctions and claims Sergio Busquets doesn't deserve to be criticised by his own team-mates
Barcelona midfielder Xavi has hit out at Fifa for its "disproportionate and unjust" transfer ban.

Football's governing body slapped the Blaugrana with a suspension from activity in the next two transfer windows after identifying irregularities in the signings of 10 young players over recent seasons.

Xavi believes the punishment is excessive, but is confident that Barca's academy can provide enough talent to offset any lack of signings in the coming 14 months should their appeal be unsuccessful.

"It's disproportionate and unjust. We'll try to oppose it," he told a press conference on Monday.

"La Masia does a more than adequate job, it's part of our philosophy. Barca spends many years working properly with youngsters, we look after them.

"We're not isolated from what happens, but we try to stay calm in the dressing room. What happens outside helps to unite us."

Xavi also took a swipe at recent criticism of Sergio Busquets following the midfielder's controversial confrontation with Pepe during the Clasico last month.

Busquets was accused of stamping on the Real Madrid defender, with Spain team-mate Iker Casillas claiming he would give the midfielder "a slap" for his behaviour, and Xavi believes such remarks are unfair.

"We have no doubts over Busquet's action. They're being very unfair to him, even his team-mates in the national team.

"We don't have to defend him, the pictures defend him. It's obvious he doesn't stamp on Pepe."

Barcelona face Atletico Madrid on Wednesday in the second leg of their Champions League quarter-final tie and Xavi has called on his side to "destroy" Diego Simeone's outfit.

"It's a final, a match of heads or tails," he added. "It's very difficult to create chances against Atletico. We have to win the game and that benefits us.

"In front of us are a team we have to destroy. We must try to take the lead and see how they react. We have to be protagonists, to dominate the ball to go on the attack."