Xavi believes it is 'inevitable' that Cesc Fabregas will return to Barcelona and is not giving up on a deal for the Arsenal captain this summer.
Barcelona have failed with one offer for Fabregas since the end of last season and have found Arsenal in no mood to countenance the sale of the midfielder.
Arsene Wenger called for the speculation surrounding the 23-year-old to stop at the weekend, while his Barca counterpart Pep Guardiola has expressed his pessimism about agreeing a deal before the close of the current transfer window.
However, Xavi is confident Fabregas will eventually come back to Camp Nou and has claimed his Spain international team-mate will only be on 'loan' to Arsenal this season.
Delaying the inevitable
"We know where Cesc wants to be this coming season, but perhaps there is not enough time for Barcelona and Arsenal to agree a deal," Xavi told the Daily Express.
"Arsenal need to understand they are only delaying the inevitable.
"If we don't manage to get his signature this season then Arsenal only really have him on loan for a year - because there is nothing they can do to stop him joining next summer.
"I haven't given up on him joining us this season but, if he doesn't, it won't be more than a year before he is back home.
"His people will have a whole season to sort out the deal between the two clubs and it will happen at the very latest next summer."
Xavi claims Fabregas told his international team-mates he was keen on joining Barcelona during Spain's successful World Cup campaign.
"We were all with him for five weeks in South Africa and we know he wants to be at Barcelona, he made it very clear," added Xavi.
"But he will under no circumstances do anything that will upset the Arsenal fans. And that's probably why we are going to have to wait for him for another year."