'Heaven-sent' - Xavi raves about Ilkay Gundogan after Barcelona impress in Champions League opener

Ilkay Gundogan Barcelona 2023-24Getty Images
  • Xavi hails Gundogan
  • Assisted once in Champions League victory
  • Joao Felix scored a brace

WHAT HAPPENED? After the German midfielder contributed with an assist in Barcelona's thumping 5-0 win in their Champions League group stage opener against Royal Antwerp on Tuesday, manager Xavi hailed the former Manchester City star's efforts and termed his signing as "heaven-sent".

WHAT THEY SAID: Speaking to reporters after the game, Xavi said: "When Gundo has the ball, everything gets better. As simple as that. He does everything well, absolutely everything. If we play good is because of guys like him. His signing was heaven-sent, honestly. A superlative player, a total joy to watch."

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Gundogan's performance went slightly under the radar after another sublime display from Joao Felix, who scored a brace against Antwerp to continue his red hot form since joining Barca on a deadline day on loan from Atletico Madrid. The Portuguese playmaker also provided the assist for Robert Lewandowski's strike.

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Xavi Barcelona 2023-24Getty Images

Ilkay Gundogan Barcelona 2023-24Getty Images

Joao Felix Barcelona Champions League 2023-24 GettyImage

WHAT NEXT? The Catalan giants will next face Celta Vigo in La Liga on Saturday.