When a young Andres Iniesta made a mockery of Real Madrid’s midfield

It’s people like Andres Iniesta who ruin the beautiful game that is football for common folk. Making tricks, flicks, passes and shuffling through tight gaps look like a piece of cake, only for us to try the very same thing at five-a-side and leave red-faced.

You make me sick, Andres. You and your magical feet. Your telepathic brain that has already seen a beautiful play flourish while you’re wriggling your way out of traffic. Disgusting. Whatever happened to keeping things simple and letting us normal people enjoy something for once?

He’s bloody good at the football, is that Iniesta fella. Absolutely sublime. When wasn’t a laser-accurate run onto a pass from an improbable angle generated by one of his several other obscenely talented Barcelona teammates, it was leaving opposition players red faced and scratching their heads all over the field, bewildered as to how that little Spaniard has wriggled through and picked out a line-splitting pass.

But for whatever reason, his sheer wizardry continues to be overlooked.

That probably has something to do with the fact he was assisting the likes of Neymar, Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez, while playing alongside Xavi and Sergio Busquets in the middle of the park. Tough gig.

When you can hang with such names, though, and still make people’s jaws drop with flashes of your own individual brilliance, you’re doing something right.

Iniesta is a Barcelona legend in every sense of the word. La Masia graduate. Nine-time La Liga winner. Treble winner. You name it, he’s done it.

It was pretty abundantly clear that the little man from Fuentealbilla was bound to be special from the off, following his 2002 debut.

What really stood out, though, was when Iniesta started coming into his own a few years into his professional career. Footage has surfaced of his highlights from El Clasico in the 2004-05 season, and frankly, they’re absurd.

A young Iniesta can be seen tying up one of the most star-studded midfields in football in knots, without breaking a sweat. Check it out below.

A young Iniesta toying with Madrid’s XI at the Bernabeu. 2004/05
by u/DeCoiTZ in Barca

Andres, mate. Come on. They’ve got families you know.

Given them the absolute run around, hasn’t he?

What’s even more shocking is seeing him with a full head of hair after all these years of flying the flag for bald footballers. When they can do it before and after nature takes its toll, that’s when you know they’re special.

It’s no surprise seeing just how stacked Iniesta’s CV became after seeing what he was capable of against elite opposition, so soon into his career.

The modern day blueprint for the Mezzala role. Imperious. Awareness, flair, weight of pass, composure, IQ, you name it. What a glorious footballer.

Football’s answer to Daniel Bryan. Not the biggest, not the strongest, not the most flashy. But undoubtedly taking a spot on everybody’s Mount Rushmore, every single time.

Iniesta is timeless.

By Mitchell Wilks

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