Iniesta Receives Apology Before Announcing His Future

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Iniesta never got a Ballon d'Or despite winning the World Cup and twice the Euro (Wikipedia)
(WFI) The best does not always win.

"France Football" has apologized to Andres Iniesta for never awarding the Barcelona midfielder the Ballon d’Or during his career.

The French magazine’s editor, Pascal Ferr, wrote an editorial piece entitled 'Forgive Us Andres', in which he says sorry for the "democratic anomaly" with Iniesta.

The article praises the work and career of the Spanish creative midfielder while leaving the door open for him to lift the Ballon d’Or for the first time this year if he has a good World Cup in Russia.

Among the compliments paid by Ferr to Iniesta are those praising his intelligence.

"Iniesta has proven that the brain is definitely the most important thing when it comes to champions," Ferre writes.

The player came close to winning the Ballon d’Or in 2010 after scoring the winning goal in the World Cup final in South Africa. However that year, the Spanish midfield finished runner-up behind his club teammate Lionel Messi, who along with Cristiano Ronaldo has dominated the award since 2008.

Iniesta also finished third in the Ballon d’Or voting two years later having been named player of the tournament in Euro 2012, which Spain also won.

The award is voted by international coaches and captains and conducted by the French magazine.

Iniesta, at almost 33 years old, is expected to announce his departure from Barcelona later this week to pursue his career most likely in China.

He will leave the Catalan giants having long been considered one of the best players of his generation.

Iniesta was seen as a rising star in Barcelona's La Masia academy and made his senior debut at the age of 18 in 2002, but it wasn't until he was 24 or 25 that he became a first-team regular.

The diminutive midfielder recently lifted his 34th trophy with Barcelona in the Copa del Rey triumph with a spectacular performance, scoring in the 5-0 humbling over Sevilla.

His titles include four Champions Leagues, eight La Liga titles - soon to be nine - plus a World Cup and two European Championships with Spain. It makes him one of the most decorated players in the modern era.

On that game last Saturday in Madrid, the veteran playmaker proved that he still has plenty to offer European football at the highest level.

That should explain the latest press reports in Spain that reveal the possible interest to sign Iniesta from PSG, Arsenal and his former manager Pep Guardiola now at Premier League champions Manchester City.

According to newspaper As, Luis Enrique is being linked as a potential successor to Arsene Wenger with the Gunners. 

For the past weeks, it's been alleged Iniesta is moving to the Far East.

Chinese state newswire Xinhua reports that Chinese Super League side Chongqing Dongdai Lifan’s main sponsor expects Iniesta to play a vital role for the club.

SWM chairman Gong Daxing told Xinhua that “Iniesta’s arrival would be beneficial for Chongqing, and a great bonus for our brand as well.”

According to some media, Iniesta would be paid more than 40 million dollars per year, while others report that he will sign a three-year deal.

Chongqing is owned by billionaire Jiang Lizhang who also has interests in Spanish side Granada, Italian club Parma and the Minnesota Timberwolves of the NBA.

Homepage photo: Wikipedia

By INSIDER Javier Monne

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