Iniesta reportedly keen on A-League move
Andres Iniesta is reportedly eyeing off the A-League as the “preferred destination” to end his glittering career, according to Spanish media.
The 33-year-old was thought to be heading to China after ending his 16-year career with Barcelona.
But the club Iniesta has long been linked to, Chongqing Lifan, have released a statement saying they would not sign him due to financial concerns over the size of his salary.
It means the 2010 World Cup winner is on the lookout for somewhere else to play and according to Spanish outlet Sport, a shift to Australia is top of his priority list.
It could be perfect timing, too, with A-League chief Greg O’Rourke last week confirming the return of a “multi-million dollar super marquee fund” in an attempt to boost flagging crowds and television numbers for next season.
Football Federation Australia has been contacted for comment over the reports.
Iniesta would fit the bill perfectly as a recognised European star who still has something to offer on the field, despite his advancing years.
He made 41 appearances across all competitions for Barcelona this season.
But if his wage demands were too big even for Chinese clubs, he may be well and truly out of the A-League’s price range.
Japan has also been listed as a potential home for Iniesta – in particular, J-League club Vissel Kobe, who are owned by Hiroshi Mikitani, the CEO of Barcelona’s major sponsors Rakuten.
However, Sport reported that Iniesta was yet to receive any proposals from Japan, even tough reports from other Spanish media claim he was already in talks.