As Andrés Iniesta transitions from Backup Xavi to Xaviniesta this season, he has become more of a leader than an actual man-of-every-match player. Getting close to 31 years old, Don Andrés is using his experience and leadership to guide his teammates through good and bad times. And he's aware of this new role, which doesn't mean that he has lost his competitive spirit, and he believes that the Blaugrana can gather all trophies this season.
Iniesta gave a very good interview to FIFA's website this week. You should check out the whole conversation, which is really nice. Here we'll stick to his observations about Barça, Lionel Messi and other things regarding the Catalans. Here's a few nuggets of his answers:
Turning to your club, it’s been a rather turbulent start to 2015 for Barcelona. When you show up for work, how much are you affected by what’s written or said in the media?
Look, there’s no denying that when there’s so much talk on the outside and when it’s not about football or your play, it can affect things. You try, or at least should try, to ignore all of that because a lot of it isn’t true. The sheer number of reports can annoy you. That said, we know we’re at a club where a lot is asked of you, where everything is magnified tenfold. There are so many opinions and a lot of things can come from that. When things aren’t going exactly to plan, then we have to deal with those kind of situations. The only way we can change that and make the public more settled is by playing well and winning. That way they forget a bit about all the stuff on the outside and focus instead on what their players are doing on the pitch.
What surprised you most about what was said at the time? The possible departure of Messi?
I hope and wish that Leo can be with Barça for a long time, because he has been, is and will be fundamental to our competing for honors. That’s my sole desire.
And what are Barça’s aspirations at present?
We are out to win everything we can and have a lot to look forward to. We’ve got a great team and the disappointment of last year has to be a motivation for us to show our true colors and try to end this season with a smile on our faces and our fans celebrating a title once more
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