Andrés Iniesta: “I would be weak in the boxing ring, never on the football field” | sports

He was in the act of starting the decisive penalty of the Asian Champions League quarter-finals in 2020. Andres Iniesta (Fuentealbilla, 1984) right rectus femoris tendon ruptured. He was eventually confined to a wheelchair. The most beloved player in Spain’s history has decided to return to play for the Japanese exile’s club Vissel Kobe, plagued and disturbed by a setback that put him in the dilemma of trying to rebuild his leg or withdrawing from professional football. while shooting a documentary. It is my decision, Produced by Rakuten TV, the film will be screened on November 1, three weeks before the start of the World Cup in Qatar, Spain’s first World Cup since the Iniesta era. It was abruptly terminated on July 1, 2018.

To ask. when did you feel Spain vs Russia Did you find yourself sitting on the bench at the Luzhniki Stadium during the round of 16 of the 2018 World Cup?

Reaction. It was very complex. You assume this because you put the team ahead and you have the desire to win that match. But I didn’t expect it. It was very difficult to accept. My career in the national team cannot be stigmatized by that feeling of my last game.

p. Zidane retired at the age of 34. 2006 World Cupwas probably the best World Cup because of its impact on the game. After Russia, you left Barça and the national team at the age of 34. How were you physically in July 2018?

r. Very good! At Wanda in the King’s Cup final Against Sevilla, many people approached me and asked, “But where are you going?” said. The level of football he suggested didn’t explain why I went to Japan. Since I couldn’t give the 400% required to play in Barça, I internalized that this was my last year. It was very painful, but I am proud. The endings cannot always be decided. But I was able to choose the end of my career at Barça and it left an unmistakable taste in my mouth.

p. The players who led their teams to win the World Cup have left the field: Pelé, Maradona, Moore, Beckenbauer, Zidane, Zoff… all but the Spaniards have left the undisputed start. You played Casillas, Xavi, Villa and your last games on the sidelines. Why? Why?

r. I do not know. Everyone has had their own experience. Things come as they come. I can’t find an explanation. Unfortunately, the only match in which I was a substitute in the national team was the last game. I had a bitter taste because I had already decided to leave it to go to Japan. It is part of life.

p. This is Russia-Spain presented as a generational change That Isco, Koke and Asensio will lead as replacements for you, Xavi or Silva. What’s left of the three weeks before another World Cup starts?

r. It was more of a bet of your coach, Demir. So far, the team has maintained a continuity. But these players are trained. Now another story. A completely new group of veteran players and youngsters who are key figures in their team like Pedri or Gavi. If they reverse the pressure, I see them very ready.

I panicked for two reasons: the operating room panic and the panic of not being able to recover. Oysters! What an ugly ending if it doesn’t go well!

p. Now they repeat about Busquets what was said about you in Russia: You are not physically well. Are you afraid that Busquets will also retire from the bench?

r. The situation Sergio has been living in for years doesn’t have to be easy. But he has an amazing football weight. It continues to be a reference point for me both in Barça and in the national team. Wasn’t he named the best player of the last European Championship?

p. Juanma Lillo says that on a playground, you are close to everyone, but next to no one. How do you manage to be in the best possible place to get the ball?

r. I cannot give a rational answer. This is unconscious. I’ve always believed that the best game is when I’m not thinking, when everything just flows, everything just goes by itself. Much of what you do is intuitive, as you’ve repeated it hundreds of times since I played on the track at my town’s school. This is my self. Childhood stuff is so engraved on you.

p. Does your memory just record what you do with the ball, or is it recorded there with the controls removed?

r. Yes, it’s the moves you’ve done your whole life. This is what remains in my brain one way or another, which will be specific. Some I was born with, some I repeated in the schoolyard or during my training at Barça. When playing, everything has a complexity and everything is in the mind.

I feel identified with Pedri. Score more or less goals, support your teams with associations. You can’t finish Pedri in 90 minutes! I find it sublime

p. Great dribbling players are usually muscular and strong: Vinicius, Ronaldinho, Maradona, Messi… Do they have the secret of their dribbling in mind?

r. I have never been strong. I see myself as an intuitive player, guessing what might happen, playing with the opponent’s body, situations you’re in, space-time with the ball, moments…

p. He was always able to cover more than ten kilometers per game at a tough pace and made the right decisions without making mistakes. But the stereotype says you are physically weak. Are you feeling fragile?

r. If I entered the ring and started boxing, I would be weak. But I’ve never seen myself weak on a football field.

p. In the documentary, she says she panicked when she learned that her rectus femoris tendon had ruptured. Panic to stop playing?

r. I panicked for two reasons: the operating room panic and the panic of not being able to recover. Oysters! What an ugly ending if it doesn’t go well! Before I say it: I want to retire in the field.

p. Kick broke. Doesn’t this symbolize his physical instability as a resilient player but lacking the strength to be a finisher?

r. His injury is due to a hit from the middle of the court, like thousands of others in practice. He caught me in the wrong position. Of course the muscle was tired. And when I took the penalty, I knew it would hurt me because I was touched.

p. And why is he sacrificing himself to score a penalty?

r. Because I’m sorry. You feel responsible for what you represent, what you are for your teammates and your club. I had to do this. It would have been much worse not to have kicked and not left with the feeling that I should have. The results were abysmal!

What a football player experiences mentally is a lot of wear and tear. I don’t want this to be misunderstood. We are not poor people. But this profession requires a mental toll.

p. Like many Spanish football players, Pedri has the same physical features and is not a scorer. And he’s being criticized for not scoring goals like you…

r. I feel identified. What is it to be cracked? Everyone has an opinion, but if you ask Pedri about his game, he will be very happy. A different player where everything goes by itself. If you see everything he can create in a team, you discover that he will be a leader, more or less scoring goals. The living space of the interiors in Barça is very special. If you are a natural finisher, you will have more chances; but if the team supports you and your associations, like Pedri… You can’t finish Pedri in 90 minutes! 19 years old and doing this. I find it sublime.

p. Muscles regenerate after injury. Is the mind also completely free from pain?

r. What a football player experiences mentally is a lot of wear and tear. I don’t want this to be misunderstood. We are not poor people. There are much worse things. But the football profession takes a mental toll. If you manage to get out of difficult situations, you will do it by being a better person.

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