Andres Iniesta. After Xavi Hernandes, it was this Spaniard who led FC Barcelona all the way and has seen and conquered it all. The only piece of silverware this magician couldn't pocket, was the prestigious Ballon d'Or. Iniesta on Friday announced that it would be his last season with FC Barcelona after being with the Catalan club since his professional debut in 2002.
Iniesta said in the press conference that it would be he last season with FC Barcelona and stated that he would decide his move at the end of the season which is not going to be in Europe.
"My only aim was to be a success at this club and I have done that", said Iniesta in the press conference.
"The club has placed its confidence in me and considered me a player who is honest with myself and the club, and I said that if I am not able to give it all to my club that has given everything to me that I wouldn't be happy."
Iniesta, with the correlation such as Italy legend Franciso Totti, has been a loyal servant to the club where he has won and done it all. Considered as the Blaugrana's architect, Iniesta has played a major role and there is absolutely no doubt that it would be hard for any player to fill his shoes.
Lionel Messi has learnt from the 'Guru' himself in his younger years and with the departure of Iniesta, it is an end of a glorious era. A product of the La Masia, Iniesta was an integral part of the Barcelona side which won two historic treble in 2009 and 2015 and with 34 trophies, he is one of the most decorated Spanish footballers of all time. Barring a debacle, Iniesta will at least get one more title for the club with Barcelona on the cusp of clinching La Liga. Before Barcelona could lift the Copa del Rey trophy, Messi hugged Iniesta tight enough which indicated that he didn't want him to leave.
One of the most memorable goals by the Spaniard would be when his lone goal, won Spain the World Cup in 2010. This playmaker has been amongst the best, played with the best and now looking back at the years, the football fans can anyday say he was the best.
Iniesta never had the opportunity to win the Ballon d'Or and France football had issued an apology. He was runner-up to Messi in 2012, the closest he could get to kiss the Ballon d'Or and say that it's his own.
After 15 glorious years at Camp Nou, Iniesta at the end of the season will have one more trophy in his hand, the Spanish League cup. A loss to AFC Roma in the UEFA Champions League quarter-finals was an absolute shock and it was after the match when the midfielder stated that he could have well played his last Europen match. The Catalan giants were on the verge of winning the treble again, but Roma had other plans for Barca, who were knocked out of the UCL in a historic comeback.
At the end of the Copa del Rey final, which Barcelona won by thrashing Sevilla 5-0, Iniesta had a say on the matter where he scored a goal as well, “There were a lot of emotions in that goal,” Iniesta admitted. “Lots of emotions, lots of feelings, lots of years. I really wanted this final to go well and I’m happy.”
Iniesta stated in the press conference that he would not play against Barca, which indicated that he would not play for a club in Europe. Iniesta had signed a lifetime contract as well with the Blaugrana last year in 2017, but the Spaniard had plans of his own as he bids goodbye at the end of the season. "I have always said that I would never compete against my club, so all the options outside Europe are open," Iniesta said. "When the season is over we will know my choice."