Andres Iniesta’s Japanese journey goes from strength to strength

Career Highlights

Born in 1984, Andres Iniesta is a Spanish professional footballer with a lot of achievements in the industry. At age 12, he played for Albacete Balompié in a junior seven-a-side tournament and was recognized by Spanish club’s top scouts. This saw him joining Barcelona’s youth academy. He was trained in the academy for years and became the captain of the Barcelona Under-15 team. In 1999, he led the team to win the Nike Premier Cup.

In 2004, Iniesta joined Barcelona’s first team under the management of Radomir Antić. He participated in 37 out of 38 league games in the 2004-05 La Liga season. During the 2005-06 season, he played an integral part in the team and was praised by football managers. Iniesta’s career grew significantly during the 2006-07 season as this is the period he made the highest number of goals for the club. He played in a number of different positions during this season.

At the start of the 2007-08 season, Ludovic Giuly left the team, and in turn, Rijkaard switched his number 24 shirt for 8. Moreover, on 25 January 2008, he extended his contract to 2014. In December 2013, Iniesta signed a new contract to stay at the club up to 2018. He played his 674th game for Barcelona, which was his final appearance on 20 May 2018.

Time in Japan

On 24 May 2018, Vissel Kobe, a Japanese professional football club, signed Iniesta on a three-year deal. He made his debut on 22 July, when he substituted Kazuma Watanabe during the second half. He scored his first goal in the J1 League on 11 August 2018, and the team won 2-1 against Jubilo Iwata. During the 2019 Emperor’s Cup, he scored the opening goal against Shimizu S-Pulse on 21 December 2019 (which are all available to bet on at カスモカジノ). This same year he cooperated with Rakuten and started his academy, Iniesta’s Methodology.

On 1 January 2020, he won his first trophy in Japan. Additionally, he has made other accomplishments in the country, including winning the 2020 Japanese Super Cup. He currently plays as a midfielder for Vissel Kobe.

In 2020, when coronavirus was prevalent, Iniesta stated it was difficult as he couldn’t travel to Spain to visit his wider family, but he was hoping for the situation to get better. He added that the most important things are people’s lives, their jobs, and moving society forward. On the brighter side, he gets to spend more time with his wife and kids.

During the last months of 2020, football resumed but Iniesta got an injury and had successful surgery in Barcelona. He returned to the pitch during last December’s Asian Champions League. In May 2021, Vissel Kobe announced a two-year contract extension with Iniesta. He will stay in the club until the end of the 2023 season.