Andres Iniesta has announced his decision to leave Barcelona at the end of the season after a 22-year stay with the Spanish side.
The midfielder has been part of Barcelona’s record breaking campaigns but announced at a press conference on Friday at the Camp Nou, this season was going to be his last. The press briefing in front of packed media, was attended by Iniesta’s teammates, leaving him in tears as he announced an end to his love affair with the club.
Iniesta thanked everyone at the club for their role in making him the player he is today, while wishing them well in the future.
“This is my last season here,” he said on Friday. “I have thought my decision through for a long time. For me, Barca is the best club in the world – this club has given me everything.
“I would like to thank my team-mates and everyone who accompanied me every day, they made me be better. It’s been a dream come true, lots of titles, important moments throughout my career. I am very happy to have played for this club. I am proud.”
He has been linked with a move to the Chinese Super League, with Chongqin Dangdai Lifan with top offficials of the Asian club admitting to negotiations between both parties.
The 33-year old said concerning his future, “There are still things to work out, different things. I said I would never play against Barca, so it’s not going to be in Europe. We will know at the end of the season.
“I’m almost 34, I’ve left everything out on the field, I’ve given everything to the club, and if I couldn’t give everything up to now, I wouldn’t be happy. I want to be happy, like I have been here.” he appended.
A glittering career at the Camp Nou saw Iniesta win a stunning eight La Liga titles, four Champions leagues trophies and a further six Copa Del rey cups.