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Xavi Hernandez On Islam, Muslim Team Mates

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By Al Arabiya

 

 

Xavi Hernandez on Islam, soccer and Barcelona

Wednesday, 04 January 2012

 

 

 

The great Spanish star and maestro of the Spanish national team and Barcelona, Xavi Hernandez, emphasized that he respects the Islamic religion.

 

In an interview with the Algeria-based newspaper el-Heddaf, Xavi said: “This is what we have learned at Barcelona’s school since we were young, respecting the others; therefore in the Barcelona team, we are committed to respect our Muslim teammates, their religion and culture. ‘Seydou’ prays everywhere and this does not bother anyone. He often asks for a room where he can be alone in order to pray serenely, and in the dressing room we all respect him, as well as Abidal and Afellay; they are Muslims and the three of them are great.” Xavi was referring to Eric Abidal, Seydou Keita and Ibrahim Affelay, fellow Barcelona stars.

 

 

“What really piqued my curiosity is the holy month of Ramadan. I found it difficult for a football player not to drink or eat for 12 hours, and sometimes even for 15 hours, under the intense hot summer weather, but it is a religious duty for Muslims and we should respect it. We also have religious rituals that we abide by.”

 

Xavi thinks that life gathers everybody, saying that “football and Barcelona bring us together also; the football gathers peoples, cultures and religions, and our team combines all of these issues. In the end, the respect is established between all of us, no matter how different our religions and cultures are.”

 

Speaking of the World Cup playoff match between Egypt and Algeria, Xavi said, “Unfortunately, I do not know a lot about it; however, I recall something that I did not want to talk about, I would rather talk about beautiful things.”

 

The superstar, referring to accolades and awards, added, “those who wish me to win the Golden Ball should realize that in football nowadays we have a player who is above all whether we like it or not, and he is Lionel Messi; he is a great and unique football player, and if he keeps up the same level of playing and succeeds at least to win the world cup with the National Argentinian team, he will be the best footballer ever in the world. As for me, I am satisfied with what I have reached; the fact that I qualified and got to the last nomination stage for the Golden Ball is a great achievement and honor for me.”

 

About his role in helping Messi becoming a star, Xavi said: “It is true that I always try to help him on the pitch, but in modern football nowadays, each and every one of us should make his teammates play better. It is true that Leo needs me on the field, but he also needs Iniesta, Busquets and the others. “On the other hand, I strongly need him in addition to Iniesta and the others. I think that what has hampered him so far in Argentina is their method; it is different from Barcelona’s; nevertheless they have a strong and great team. In fact, Messi remains an amazing footballer and I am happy to be his teammate.”

 

Speaking of Zinedine Zidane, Xavi said: “In my opinion, Zidane was the best player in the world during the period in which he played – from 1995 until 2006 – and he is one of the best players of all time. It is a real pleasure to see him play and perform.

 

 

(Translated from Arabic by Sarah Sfeir)

 

Source: http://english.alarabiya.net/articles/2012/01/04/186315.html

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PropellerAds

I hope those Muslim footballers are giving da'waa during training sessions!

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You usually see the European footballers, especially those in Spain, quite openly religious- majority of Spain would be Christian (as are the players) and there is plenty of crossing of chest, hands to the sky, fingers pointing to heavens etc from some stars.

 

Good thing is that these players are also much better behaved and role models for the young- not like the English types of Cole/Terry/Rooney who are usually in paper for wrong reasons and their 'god' seems to be money.

 

Hernandez shows how religion can shape a person - giving some balance in life, humility and kindness- as do players like Messi/Iniesta.

Edited by The Doc
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    • By Saracen21stC
      Barcelona's Islamic Heritage in a Church
       
      By Farrukh I. Younus

       

           Sant Paul del Camp church.
         
       
       
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      If Muslims came to Spain in the 8th century, and were expelled, at least from this region of Spain, Catalonia, in the 15th century, surely there must be some evidence or presence of Islam in Barcelona. Muslims first step foot in Barcelona in the 8th century when 'the Moors' conquered the city but their presence lasted less than a hundred years as 'the Franks' occupied the city turning it into a military strong post. Still, the Muslim presence in the Catalan region surrounding Barcelona remained for quite some centuries. As I discovered, Catalonia, the most north eastern province of Spain, bordering France, did indeed have an Islamic influence.  Barcelona on the other hand, did not. At least, that is what I was able to determine having searched the internet and contacted a number of Spanish publishers who specialized in the history of the region.


       

       
      The cloisters.


      Old Church With Islamic Architecture!


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      Inside I asked a lady where I might find the cloisters only to discover that they would be open briefly after Sunday Mass, for which she invited me to stay. Now it has been years since I have attended any form of Sunday service. It may have been a regular feature when I was a young boy at boarding school, but since then, like many of my Christian friends, I had not attended one. I thought to myself, why not, I will stand at one of the pews towards the back. As the service began my first thought was that this is no different than going to a Masjid where the sermon is conducted in Arabic – I understand one, just as much as I understand the other.

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      Every now and then a word I would recognize would be spoken, the most common being the reference to Prophet Jesus where in addition to saying "Peace be upon him" I would add, 'There is no god but Allah'.
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      Of course I wonder then how Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, made space for the 60 visiting Christians to pray in his Masjid in Medina. Knowing full well that their faith entailed a degree of shirk (associating partners to God, the highest 'crime' in Islam), still, when they came from Najran, he gave them space in his Masjid to conduct their prayers. [Reference: Ibn Ishaque, The Life of Muhammad, pp 270-77, English translation, Guillaume] And despite these fundamental disagreements with regards to faith, a treaty was set up between the Muslims and the Christians of Najran. [Reference:  AI‑Baladhuri, Ahmad ibn Yahyi ibn Jibir, Futuh al‑buldan, p. 76; Kitab al­amwal, p. 272]


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      Source: http://www.onislam.net/english/culture-and-entertainment/iblog/414052-barcelonas-islamic-heritage-in-a-church.html
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