Andres Iniesta: the top 5 goals of his career

Following the news that Andres Iniesta will be leaving Vissel Kobe, we look back on the Spaniard’s legendary career to pick his top 5 goals.

Iniesta leaves the Japanese side after five years in Asia. Whilst with Vissel, the understated technician won the 2019 Japanese Cup, plus a Japanese Super Cup. However, prior to this, Andres Iniesta was a fundamental part of some of the best teams in football history.

An FC Barcelona academy graduate, Iniesta won everything with the Blaugrana. He picked up multiple Champions League titles, La Liga crowns, and numerous other trophies. The Spaniard was also crucial to Pep Guardiola’s revolutionary “tiki-taka” playstyle that brought so much success to Barca.

Internationally, Iniesta won back-to-back European Championships on either side of the 2010 World Cup. He was a regular fixture in the all-conquering Spain squad, and always the man for the big occasion. The midfield maestro collected Man of the Match awards in the final of the World Cup, the Euros, and the Champions League throughout his playing days in Europe.

Of course, Iniesta was not averse to scoring a screamer or two, either. But what are the top 5 goals in the glittering career of Andres Iniesta?

#5: vs Sanfrecce Hiroshima, 2018 J1 League

Starting off with his later years in Japan, No.5 of the top goals from Andres Iniesta is a banger in Vissel Kobe colours.

This strike was just his second in the J1 League, and definitely his best.

Standing on the edge of the box, Iniesta used an overlapping decoy run to effortlessly open up some space. A drop of the shoulder then allowed him to beat a defender, after which the Spaniard unleashed a rocket.

Iniesta’s effort flew into the top-left corner, leaving the keeper with no chance. Sadly, though, this goal did not earn a win. Vissel Kobe drew 1-1 with Sanfrecce Hiroshima in this 2018 match-up.

#4: vs Sevilla, 2008/09 La Liga

Andres Iniesta scored an absolute beauty during a 2008/09 league fixture against Sevilla.

Driving into open space in the midfield, the maestro had numerous options on either side of him with which to play a typically searching pass. However, Iniesta had other ideas.

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The Barcelona midfielder spotted the Sevilla keeper, Javi Varas, off his line. So, Iniesta hit a curling, flowing shot that sailed over Varas and into the back of the net. It was a truly sublime strike that typified the creativity and technical quality that the Spaniard possesses.

After scoring one of his top 5 career goals, Andres Iniesta went on to add three assists in a 4-0 Barca thrashing of Sevilla. A truly virtuoso performance, with a spectacular goal to boot.

#3: vs Netherlands, 2010 World Cup Final

One of the most clutch goals of all time is also definitely in the top 5 from Andres Iniesta.

A gripping, if goalless, 2010 World Cup final saw the brutal defence of the Netherlands thwart the possession-based Spain for 90 minutes. Oranje looked destined to keep Spain at bay through extra time and force penalties – until Iniesta.

The Netherlands intercepted an attempted Fernando Torres through-ball but could not stop Fabregas from regaining possession. He found Iniesta, who had peeled to the right side of the box to find space.

The midfielder then shot a clinical half-volley which took one bounce as it powered past Marten Stekelenberg. Thanks to this 115th-minute strike, Andres Iniesta became a national hero as he delivered Spain their first-ever World Cup.

#2: vs Real Madrid, 2015/16 La Liga

Not many Barcelona players earn the honour of a standing ovation from the Bernabeu crowd, but Andres Iniesta did as he scored one of his top five goals against Real Madrid in 2015.

Iniesta produced a masterful performance during this La Liga encounter. He assisted Neymar towards the end of the first half which gave Barca a 2-0 half-time advantage. The Brazilian returned the favour just after the break.

During a one-two between the stars, Neymar’s backheel laid the ball off to Iniesta on the edge of the box. The Blaugrana icon followed this skill with a fantastic effort, the shot evading two defenders and Keylor Navas on its way to the top corner.

Iniesta’s strike was the third in a 4-0 drubbing of Barca’s El Clasico rivals. The Spaniard went off towards the end of the match, where he received the ultimate recognition of respect from Los Blancos faithful.

#1: vs Chelsea, 2008/09 Champions League semi-final 2nd leg

Although it was in controversial circumstances, this particular Andres Iniesta goal was a stunner. He literally fired Barcelona to the 2009 Champions League final with an unbelievable shot.

As time wound down, Chelsea were minutes away from back-to-back finals. Barca, the away team, were desperate to find an away goal that would send them through.

Guardiola’s side piled on the pressure, with Lionel Messi trying to find a way through. He squared the ball to Iniesta on the edge of the box. Without hesitating, the Barca star nailed a first-time strike, hitting slightly across the ball to add a touch of outward curl.

His shot nestled in the top corner, breaking Chelsea’s hearts and sending the visiting Barca fans insane. Yes, Chelsea fans may hate this goal, but surely, they respect it. For us, it is undoubtedly No.1 in the top 5 goals from Andres Iniesta.

Featured image credit: Getty