Soothsayer Xavi has last laugh with Asian Cup predictions

Barcelona great Xavi Hernandez has proved to be skilled in predicting the AFC Asian Cup results.

Prediction Master: Xavi predicted seven of the quarterfinalists at the AFC Asian Cup right, while also picking Japan and Qatar as the surprise finalists.   -  Getty Images

The 2010 World Cup had Paul the Octopus, the NFL has play-call predictor extraordinaire Tony Romo, and this year's Asian Cup has Barcelona great, and now soothsayer, Xavi Hernandez.

The Spanish World Cup winner has proved remarkably skilled off the pitch as well as on it, with a series of stunning predictions about what would happen in the tournament.

He got most of them right, especially picking Qatar and Japan as surprise finalists.

Before that he correctly predicted seven of the last eight quarter-finalists and three of the four semi-finalists.

Read: Qatar pelted with shoes as it stomps UAE to reach Asian Cup final

The only predictions he has got wrong so far is tipping Syria to get to the last eight -- Vietnam did instead -- and Australia to make the semi-finals, but the Socceroos lost to the United Arab Emirates.

But apart from that, Xavi has proved remarkably prescient.

Xavi was trolled on the internet after he predicted Qatar to reach the final.   -  Getty Images

 

He was ridiculed online after he went on Doha-based TV station Al Kass in December and publicly announced his predictions for the tournament.

Many accused the Doha-based star of home town bias after picking Qatar to reach the final but Xavi is having the last laugh.

For Friday's final, the Al Sadd star and 2022 World Cup ambassador has, perhaps unsurprisingly, predicted Qatar to lift the trophy for the first ever time.

But as he is matching Paul the Octopus, who managed 85 per cent in 2010 including correctly selecting Xavi's Spain to lift the World Cup, there is a good chance the Spaniard will be proved correct.