France Football formally apologise to Andres Iniesta for never awarding him the Ballon d’Or

France Football formally apologise to Andres Iniesta for never awarding him the Ballon d’Or

Head of French football magazine ‘France Football’ Pascal Ferre has issued an apology to Andres Iniesta for never selecting the Barcelona midfielder for the Ballon d’Or award chosen by the magazine.

In an editorial in the latest edition of the weekly magazine under the title “Sorry Andres”, Ferre stated his regret that a player with as much talent as Iniesta has never been awarded the Ballon d’Or.

The Spaniard is set to leave Barcelona to join Chinese club Chongqing Dangdai Lifan at the end of the season, and is widely expected to make the announcement in the next few days, according to a report by The Independent.

Iniesta is one of the most naturally talented midfielders to grace European and world football and Ferre published an article reflecting this after writing a ‘mea culpa’ meaning ‘through my fault’ that was full of superlatives for the Spaniard.

“He is the best facilitator of play of all time. The majority of his contemporaries make their lives complicated, but he has enjoyed himself on the pitch for 15 years, making everything simple. Without any vanity, he only thinks about bringing the play to life,” Ferre said.

“Iniesta’s talent is to invent for others” he added. “Without him, Messi would have grown tired much more quickly at Barça. His altruism has deprived him of getting even more recognition.”

Lastly, the prestigious magazine said it is “an anomaly” that a player of the quality of the Barcelona midfielder has never won the Ballon d’Or.

“Of all the absences on the list of Ballon d’Or winners, his is very painful,” said the editor.

Andres Iniesta joined Barcelona as a youth player in 1996 and progressed to the first team, making his debut in 2002 as an 18-year-old and has gone on to make over 650 appearances for the Spanish giants.

During that time he has won eight La Liga titles (this season would be the ninth), six Copa Del Rey trophies, four Champions Leagues plus the 2008 and 2012 European Championships and the 2010 World Cup with Spain.

Now 33, Iniesta is set to play in the Chinese Super League next season despite many pleading for him to stay in Europe, including Real Betis boss Quique Setein.

The former Racing Santander midfielder tweeted: “Iniesta, please, don’t go to China, come to Betis!”

A sentiment that is surely felt by managers across Europe.