The former Barça player, now at Vissel Kobe, recognises that it will be 'very special' to play against his team of his life
Andrés Iniesta experienced something very different this Friday. At 6.15pm local time, he gave one of the strangest press conferences of his career: for a team in opposition to Barça. "On a personal level it will be special to face many of my former team-mates," he said, aware that this is surely something that won't happen again.
The press room of the Noevir Stadium in Kobe was full as both Thorsten Fink and Ernesto Valverde, the coaches of Vissel and Barça respectively, and also Sergio Busquets spoke to the media.
"Iniesta has already begun to play his game, turning up late today," Sergio joked.
"We will try to ensure the supporters have a good time and have fun. We want it to be a special day for our fans and for Japan," added Iniesta.
After the press conference ended, the player went to the stadium accompanied by his children, to follow Barça's training as a spectator. He met with members of staff and other employees, as well as with president Josep Maria Bartomeu, CEO Òscar Grau, the director of the Area of the Presidency and Board of Directors Jaume Masfferer and the technical secretary of the first team and his ex-team mate Éric Abidal.
They all embraced sincerely because everyone loves him. Iniesta is like that: a great football player and a super person.
Once the first team's training had finished, the turn of his ex-team mates came. One by one, they went to look for Andrés to greet him. Marc-André ter Stegen gave him the gloves which he used in the training session and Ivan Rakitic was the last person who has talked with him.
If Friday was an intense and special day for Andrés Iniesta, it will be more so this Saturday. We await Vissel Kobe-Barça in which he will surely once again be the great protagonist.