Andres Iniesta, 메이저놀이터39, has announced his departure from the Japanese J-League.
Iniesta held a press conference at a hotel in downtown Kobe on July 25 to announce that he will leave Vissel Kobe in July. His contract runs through the end of this year, but he has decided to terminate it six months early by mutual consent.
Iniesta moved to Kobe in 2018 and has been playing in Japan for five years. During his time in the J-League, he scored 21 goals and 22 assists in 113 games. “I’ve been imagining the moment I retire from Kobe, but it can’t be what I want it to be,” Iniesta said, adding, “It’s hard for me to continue playing here.”
A tearful Iniesta said goodbye to Kobe, but he will continue to play. When asked when he would retire, he said, “I don’t know. I still want to play soccer, and I believe I can play for a long time,” he said.
Iniesta, who plans to play until the end of his days, could be headed to Asia next. On the 26th, Spanish media ‘Sport’ reported that “one of Iniesta’s options is Saudi Arabia,” and that “after acquiring Cristiano Ronaldo, they continue to lure great legends”.
Could Saudi Arabia get all of Barcelona’s legends Alba, Busquets, Messi, and Iniesta ⓒ Sport Caption
Iniesta, who parted ways with Japan, has no intention of retiring just yet ⓒ Yonhap/EPA
The media has recently noticed that a number of players from Barcelona’s golden era are becoming free agents, with Sergio Busquets and Jordi Alba deciding to leave the club at the end of the season. With their priority being to remain active, they don’t have many options outside of the Middle East, where they can afford their high salaries.
According to Sport, “Busquets is currently in contact with Al Nasr and Al Hilal. Al Hilal want Lionel Messi (Paris Saint-Germain) and are also thinking of bringing in Alba.” “If the plan works, four Barcelona legends could meet in Saudi Arabia. None of them have signed yet.”
Iniesta’s other destination is the United States. David Beckham’s Inter Miami are reportedly interested in the player, which raises questions about his future.