Barcelona to share captaincy between four players; Messi included

Lionel Messi 2

New manager Luis Enrique has split his decision for the Barcelona captaincy four ways.

Barcelona have named four captains ahead of the new season, after new boss Luis Enrique seemingly had trouble deciding on just one.

Vice-captain in recent times Xavi will lead the Catalans when fit and selected, with Andres Iniesta, Lionel Messi and Sergio Busquets also having a share in the role.

The decision comes following Barca legend Carlos Puyol's retirement at the end of last season, after many years of service to the club.

In what is the start of a new era at the Spanish giants, Luis Enrique will be hoping some joint leadership will help the club recover from a trophyless campaign last time out.

The reasons as to the joint captaincy could also hint towards the role Xavi will play in the next year. Having taken some time to contemplate if he even wanted to continue at Barcelona, the 34-year-old could be set for a quieter season than he is used to.

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The club have been working hard in the transfer market to ensure success is rekindled , with the signing of Luis Suarez from Liverpool being their stand-out statement of intent. Jérémy Mathieu, Claudio Bravo, Ivan Rakitić and goalkeeper Marc-André ter Stegen have also joined the club to try and replicate the success of recent times.

Barcelona were outmuscled in all competitions they took part in last season by Spanish rivals, as Atletico Madrid beat them in the league and Champions League, while Real pipped them to the Cop del Rey.

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