Andrés Iniesta is Actually Leaving Barcelona

Andrés Iniesta is Actually Leaving Barcelona

Andrés Iniesta is Actually Leaving Barcelona

Together with club legends Xavi and Messi, Iniesta formed the fulcrum of the all-conquering Barcelona team under Pep Guardiola which mesmerized world football with their famous tiki-taka brand of football.

Iniesta has won a flurry of trophies with Barcelona.

"This press conference is to communicate that this will be my last season at Barcelona", the midfielder, who only signed a lifetime contract with the club earlier this season, announced at the club's Ciutat Esportiva as he fought back tears.

Although the 33-year-old has not confirmed his next destination, he is being strongly linked with a move to Chinese Super League side Chongqing Lifan. "I have thought my decision through for a long time".

"I said I would never play against Barca so it is not going to be in Europe". After 22 years here I know what it means to be a Barcelona player, the best team in the world for me.

It would secure a domestic double in Iniesta's farewell campaign, after he scored in a 5-0 win over Sevilla in the Spanish King's Cup final last weekend.

He would not be short of offers this summer from the world's elite clubs but Iniesta said that to avoid facing Barca, he will not be staying in Europe.

Iniesta is still playing regularly for the La Liga outfit.

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Spain coach, Julen Lopetegui, said Iniesta was still one of the best players around and added that not many footballers receive the adoration the Barca veteran does.

Iniesta has spent his entire senior career at Barcelona and is one of the most loved figures in world football.

"I want to say thank you to the club and La Masia, which made me who I am".

Iniesta joined Barcelona at the age of 12, making his first team debut at 18 in 2002.

'Andrés, you knew it in Barcelona and you will always know it wherever you go, here you always have your card, ' the message in the tweet reads.

As an individual Iniesta is the only player to have ever been named man-of-the-match in the final game of the European Championship, the World Cup and the Champions League.

At his peak, Iniesta was a symbol of Spanish possession-based football and to this day, many maintain he should have won the Ballon D´Or in 2010, when he finished second to Lionel Messi.

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