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Xavi Simons: La Masia’s gem is seeing the light with PSG in Ligue 1

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Xavi Simons was once considered one of the gems at La Masia, but now he’s impressing at Paris Saint-Germain.The youngster landed in Paris in 2019 from Barcelona and made his debut with the first team in a friendly against Sochaux in August 2020. Thomas Tuchel saw him as an alternative option, but he has become increasingly important since Mauricio Pochettino took charge.Under Tuchel, Simons was limited to playing with the under-19s. The current Chelsea boss only called him to the squad twice for the first team, but he didn’t make a competitive appearance. With Pochettino, though, he has already made nine matchday squads.The former Espanyol boss even handed him his competitive debut against Caen at 17 years, 10 months and 15 days, becoming the first debutant of Pochettino’s era.”It’s a very special moment for me,” Simons said then. “I’m a little moved. I hope I can play more in the future.”I have to keep training and surely more chances will come.”In the latest Ligue 1 matchday, the 32nd, Pochettino gave him his Ligue 1 debut, coming on for the last few minutes against Strasbourg.An Instagram celebrity
Simons already has three million followers, and he has had celebrity status since his early teenage days, signing with Nike at 13.His jump from Barcelona
It looked as though the player would make it into the Barcelona first team, but he left in 2019 for the Parc des Princes.”It’s complicated because nobody likes to say goodbye to what has been home,” Simons said. “I’ll never forget the first time I put on Barcelona’s shirt; I fulfilled a dream.”Now it’s time to start a new and exciting adventure away from Barcelona. But I couldn’t say goodbye without saying that this club; all the staff and fans will always have a special place in my heart.”In joining PSG, helped by agent Mino Raiola, Simons’ salary went from 200,000 euros to 500,000 euros and came with the promise of a more direct path to the first team.