Playing for Barcelona isn't Just Playing a Football Match: Andres Iniesta
File image of Andres Iniesta (Photo Credit: Reuters)
Spanish football legend Andres Iniesta has opened up about the "massive pressure and constant tension" he faced while playing for LaLiga giants FC Barcelona, a club with which he was associated for close to two decades. Iniesta played 442 matches for Barcelona before leaving as club captain, passing on the armband to Lionel Messi. He then joined Japanese club Vissel Kobe in May 2018.
"I am at a different stage in life. Leaving Barcelona and coming here. Well, in many ways has given me a lot of freedom. Playing for Barcelona isn't just playing a football match. It is massive pressure and constant tension," Iniesta says in biopic 'Andres Iniesta - The unexpected hero'. "It's training perfectly every day, it's being the best in every match and that's very stressful and mentally exhausting," he adds.
The 36-year-old further said that it was because of the constant pressure that he couldn't enjoy 100 per cent at Barcelona. "I enjoyed it at Barcelona but there was something here that didn't let you enjoy at 100 per cent. So, this something here which represented being at Barcelona and the institution it is, and what that means, that doesn't exist here," says Iniesta.
"So, that missing part frees you from a lot of other things. I have really noticed that here (Vissel Kobe). That might be the biggest difference."
The 85-minute documentary, which is streaming on Discovery Plus, focuses on Iniesta's life and an incredible career spanning the beginning of his path at Barcelona Youth Academy, La Masia, through to his meteoric rise to fame playing for Barcelona and Spain, where his on-pitch skills secured the victory at the 2010 World Cup, and his arrival at Vissel Kobe in Japan.