Barcelona and Spain midfielder Xavi has revealed that he was close to signing for Bayern Munich in 2008, but he was persuaded to remain in Catalunya by then coach Pep Guardiola.
Xavi admitted that he almost considered the switch after being approached by the Bavarians and actually held preliminary talks over a move to the Allianz Arena.
Current Bayern coach, Guardiola, had just taken over at the Nou Camp and was instrumental in persuading the talented midfielder to stay in Spain.
"It was pretty serious," Xavi said in an interview with El Mundo Deportivo.
"There was even a meeting with a coach of Bayern,” he World Cup winner added.
"But Pep grabbed me and told me that I could not go; that what he had in mind for the club revolved around a group of certain players who could not leave.”
"It was a good decision because my desire now is to retire at Barca."
Xavi then reiterated that he was not on his way out of the Nou Camp, amidst rumours of a move to the MLS to link up with former Blaugrana team-mate Thierry Henry at New York Red Bulls.
"Nobody has offered me anything," the 33-year-old insisted.
"I know nothing of the interest from New York. Henry has not called me and I have not spoken to him. I don't even have his phone number!"