Andrea Pirlo was snubbed by Barcelona and is now the leading candidate to replace Davide Ballardini at Genoa.
The La Liga giants will announce Xavi as their new head coach after the sacking of Ronald Koeman less than two weeks ago.
Al Saad have confirmed Barcelona paid Xavi’ €5m release clause.
Pirlo was among the candidates to replace the Koeman at the Nou Camp as President Joan Laporta is an admirer of the former midfielder.
However, Xavi has always been Barcelona’s first choice and the Catalans opted to hire their legend because of his knowledge of the club.
According to reports in Italy, Pirlo was a candidate for the job, but Barcelona never contacted him.
The 2006 Italy World Cup winner could return to the bench anyway as he is reported to be Genoa’s No.1 candidate to replace Davide Ballardini at Genoa.
The Rossoblu have only won one of their 11 Serie A games this season and are involved in the race for survival with eight points.
According to multiple reports in Italy, including SportMediaset, La Gazzetta dello Sport and Calciomercato.com, Pirlo will be called by new Genoa owners if Ballardini gets a disappointing result in the next away game at Empoli.
Pirlo’s son Nicolo has recently started following Genoa on Instagram, suggesting the Grifone could be the next destination for his father.
Pirlo nuovo allenatore del Genoa? Ecco l’indizio social https://t.co/D4HOnEUJPr
— informazione sport (@infoitsport) November 5, 2021