'Impossible to accept' – Xavi fumes after Al Sadd thrashed at Club World Cup

Al Sadd boss Xavi was left feeling angry with his players after they suffered a heavy 6-2 defeat to ES Tunis at the Club World Cup on Tuesday.

The Qatar champions were dismantled by a hat-trick from forward Hamdou Elhouni, producing what their head coach described as a “very disappointing” performance at Doha’s Khalifa International Stadium in the fifth-place play-off.

Al Sadd did play the majority of the contest with 10 men after defender Abdelkarim Hassan was deemed to have blocked a goal-bound shot with his hand, leading to a straight red card.

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Yet Xavi did not hold back in his post-match assessment, telling a news conference he felt his side’s attitude for the match was simply unacceptable. 

“I’m very sad, very disappointed and very angry because we played the first two matches really well,” Xavi said. 

“This is a premium for us and I can’t understand the team today. This is not what we want. 

“We are Al Sadd and we’re playing against African champions and our attitude during the first 20 minutes isn’t acceptable.”

Former Barcelona and Spain international Xavi, who took charge in May after four years as a player with the club, acknowledged an improvement from his players following the dismissal of Hassan.

“After we got the red card we played okay,” he added. “We played with good attitude, intensity. 

“I cannot accept the first 30 minutes, it’s impossible to accept. I’m very angry, we need to find the solution. It was a really bad result

“We have to come back of course. We’re in a bad moment because we couldn’t compete well, but our reality is to win the local competitions and start well in the Asian Champions League. 

“This competition was a gift. Now we have to come back.”

The Club World Cup continues on Wednesday night with Liverpool facing Mexican club Monterrey in the semi-finals. 

The winner of that match will face Brazilian champions Flamengo in the final after they beat Al-Hilal 3-1 on Tuesday. 

European teams have won the competition for the past six years with Real Madrid claiming the last three tournaments and Corinthians the last side outside of Europe to lift the trophy when they did so in 2012 after beating Chelsea in the decider. 

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