Tuesday, October 17, 2006

The Wonder of Being Andres Iniesta

Phil Ball's column for ESPN Soccernet this week (link above) is an excellent piece on Barca youngster Andres Iniesta. Along with the more heralded Leo Messi, he represents the future of Barcelona. Sure, he's the only Barca player who hasn't sold his image rights - which isn't too much of a surprise given his non-flashy style and umm...not quite Beckham-esque looks. But his development has been astonishing.

Pushed into service to cover for the injured Xavi last season, he impressed many with great work in big games, like the Champions League semi-final against Milan during which he earned the praise of Sir Bobby Charlton, who opined that though he did not know the player's name, the no. 24 gave a great performance. I like him a lot, despite the fact that he's still growing and can end up being marked out of games. It's hard to describe what he does, similar to Xavi but not quite the same. The above column does the best job I've see so far.


Yrsa Roca Fannberg said...

Iniesta has been one of my favourites for a long time. it is nice that you don't have to shout to get noticed.
I wrote a piece on him in May just before the big game on my blog. If you have time please have a look.
He is learning fast fast from Deco and Xavi, but also from Motta and Edmilson. Will be one of the pillowstones in the future, with Messi, Giovanni and Bojan.

linda said...

I hope the club manages to hold onto him, though. If he doesn't play regularly enough, that could be a worry.

As for the youngsters you mentioned, I've heard of all the others, but who's Bojan?

Isaiah said...

Bojan Krkic. Here's youtube's whole supply on him:

Looks good, but you can never really tell who will become the next Ronaldinho/whatever other star you wish to name as great.

Iniesta is brilliant; I've felt that he was underrated for a while, but he plays that undefined positions like Carrick where you're just not sure if what you're watching is effective or not.

Yrsa Roca Fannberg said...

There is no need to worry about Iniesta leaving. Rijkaard has really groomed him, he is the eye of the president. He is very shy and therefore does not have this huge ego to throw around, the only worry could be his father ... who supports ... RM...
I think Iniesta will stay, he is proving that perhaps he can be a good substitute for Deco rather than for Xavi, he nicks a lot of balls.
He won't leave. He is appreciated and knows that.