BARCELONA boss Xavi has been left stunned after the former director of the Spanish club’s youth teams was accused of sexually abusing 60 former pupils at a school where he also worked.
Spanish authorities yesterday launched an investigation into the allegations against PE teacher Albert Benaiges, who was a key member of Barca’s youth academy from 1991-2011.
Benaiges, 71, has denied any wrongdoing.
After stints abroad with foreign clubs, Benaiges returned to Barca last year but resigned last week for personal reasons.
Xavi said: “I don’t have any information that there have been any type of these episodes, although that does not mean they did not happen.
“He was my coach and I never had any suspicions. I am very surprised and stunned.
“This is a very delicate, complicated issue.
“I have spoken with the coaching staff because we love Albert very much.
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“We always had an excellent relationship, and he left a very good legacy. It is the justice system that will have to decide.”
The Catalan giants are trying to get their season back on track under Xavi.
But they have suffered further losses in their last two outings.
And Barca were dumped out of the Champions League group stages for the first time in two decades after losing to Bayern Munich on Wednesday.
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