Andres Iniesta is a once in a lifetime player to ever grace the beautiful game with his presence.
Started playing in the year 2001 for Barcelona B; Iniesta is someone who has been loyal to the Catalan giants ever since and is still part of the mighty FC Barcelona where he started playing at the age of 18. When Iniesta first arrived at Barca, then-captain Pep Guardiola famously told fellow midfielder Xavi: “You’re going to retire me. This lad (Iniesta) is going to retire us all.”
Since the 2004-05 season Iniesta started featuring regularly for the club and has since remained as a vital part of the team, winning a total of 29 trophies at Barcelona. Iniesta is someone who is equally important to his national country of Spain, where he has a total of 6 major honors.
Andres turns 32 today and still has a lot left in the tank and has a lot more to offer to the football world. Thus on his birthday let us take a look at his top 5 goals from his staggering career so far.
No.5: Real Madrid vs FC Barcelona- La Liga, 2014
This was FC Barcelona at their typical best, after a long build up through the entire field Lionel Messi played a brilliant ball through the Real defense to Iniesta who took a shot on his left foot as it hit the bar but was enough to beat Real keeper Diego Lopez.
No.4: Real Madrid vs FC Barcelona- Super Cup, 2011
This goal was almost felt like as if Lionel Messi and Andres Iniesta swapped positions on the field. Messi dribbled passed the Real defense in the midfield area, and then played an amazing through ball as 4 Real defenders kept looking and couldn’t do anything, Iniesta then was on the run as he chipped the ball over Casillas’ head to score the first goal of the game.
No.3: FC Barcelona vs Osasuna- La Liga, 2014
After an attack from the right side of the field, Dani Alves passed the ball to Sergio Busquets who then passed it on to Iniesta, the Barca no.8 took a chance from outside the box as his thunderous shot found the back of the net to give Barca a 3-0 lead.
No.2: Chelsea vs FC Barcelona- UEFA Champions League, 2009
The most important goal in Iniesta’s club career so far. Barca’s second leg match against Chelsea remains one of the most controversial matches of all times. Chelsea who were leading at half time 1-0 and turned out to be the better side, right till the end when in the 93rd minute a shot from Andres Iniesta from outside the box found the back of the net, the shot was Barca’s only shot on target that night as Iniesta’s last minute goal ensured Barca qualification on the night.
Much like his match against Chelsea in 2010, this was the most important match in Spanish football history as Spain reached the World Cup final for the first time ever. The final against Netherlands was an intense battle, both sets of players fought for a total of 120 minutes with penalties seeming inevitable but it was in the 109th minute when Jesus Navas started a series of passes, Cesc Fabregas played the ball onto Iniesta who then took a shot from inside the box beating Stekelenburg and winning the FIFA World Cup for Spain for the first time ever.
Photo by Gerard Reyes