Zidane is better than Iniesta

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Jaime

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Zidane is better than Iniesta

Post by Jaime on Fri Jun 29, 2012 7:23 pm

I just thought we needed to take a step back and look at this from a different perspective.

Zidane > Iniesta

Discuss.

Ale
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Re: Zidane is better than Iniesta

Post by Fade out on Fri Jun 29, 2012 7:35 pm

Please change the title to Zidane > Xavi + Iniesta Ale
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Jaime

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Re: Zidane is better than Iniesta

Post by Jaime on Fri Jun 29, 2012 7:36 pm

Originally it was going to be called Zidane > Xavi + Iniesta + Busquets but I thought it might do worms' head in.
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Jaime

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Re: Zidane is better than Iniesta

Post by Jaime on Fri Jun 29, 2012 7:38 pm



Could Iniesta do this for example? I think not. If he tried he would have run into Materazzi's knee and knocked himself unconscious. True story!

Progress! Ale
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messiah

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Re: Zidane is better than Iniesta

Post by messiah on Fri Jun 29, 2012 7:45 pm

cheers



First it was Andrés Iniesta versus Italy, then it was Andrés Iniesta versus Croatia. One man taking on two entire teams: two virtually identical photographs that seemed to define him, revealing the respect and the fear that he provokes in opponents like Luka Modric, who referred to him as "the best in the world in his position". The man from La Mancha surrounded by defenders, no way out. Except that for Iniesta there is almost always a way out.

The pictures, reminiscent of that famous photograph of Diego Maradona faced by the Belgian defence at the 1982 World Cup, did the rounds, reaching everyone. Including Iniesta. "When I saw them I felt a bit like a character in the cartoons I grew up with," he said. "It reminded me of Oliver and Benji."

The character is Tsubasa Ozora from the Japanese animation Captain Tsubasa – better known in Spain, where it is wildly popular, as Oliver and Benji. In the Spanish version, Tsubasa Ozora is Oliver Atom, the schoolboy who can do amazing things, flying past crudely-drawn, stationary opponents; the boy who takes his football everywhere and survived being hit by a bus because the ball took the impact. No wonder he says: "The ball is my friend."

The ball is Iniesta's friend, too. That, like the photo, is almost the perfect definition of him. Iniesta said that the pictures were anecdotal, a brief moment caught on camera, but they are not entirely coincidental.

Most players at Barcelona and for Spain move the ball on rapidly and much has been made of playing with a single touch. Or even, as Xavi recalls the Barça coach Charly Rexach insisting, with mig toc – half a touch. Iniesta is the opposite; he often moves it on fast but he also holds it, carries it, waits with it. Until the right moment. As one of Pep Guardiola's former collaborators explains: "He knows exactly when to release it. And he holds it so long, inviting pressure on himself and taking responsibility because, somewhere deep down, he knows that he is better than them."

Some create space by moving away from the ball; Iniesta creates space by moving others towards it. Opponents are drawn in, shown the ball, offered it. And then, when the moment is right, a sudden, almost imperceptible acceleration and he has gone. Or the ball is. "My team-mates would have an easier life if I always had five men on me," he says, saying much. "Iniesta," the former Barcelona manager, Frank Rijkaard was fond of saying, "hands out sweeties." The first time Guardiola, who until the end of last season was Iniesta's coach at Barcelona, saw him play, while he was still a player at the Camp Nou, he reported back on a kid that "reads the game better than I do".

After Spain defeated Croatia, the midfielder Ivan Rakitic was asked what it was that made Iniesta different. He replied: "The authority with which he plays."

"Iniesta," he added, "is the best. We saw today that we can play against all of them, but against Iniesta it is different. They are such a good team anyway but he is another level again. He has everything: he's so fast, he thinks so quickly, he's in control."

"When he has the ball, it's like everything else stops," says Fernando Torres. "Like the camera is going in slow motion. He's decisive."

A glimpse of the speed of movement, the cartoon-like way he leaves others in suspended animation, is offered by a Nike skills video filmed in Barcelona. The drill sees him shifting the ball from one foot to the other with a youth teamer acting as an opponent. He is supposed to be walking it, breaking it down. Doing it slow. Iniesta approaches his man, talking viewers through it and then, suddenly, it happens: right-left-right. It is so fast there is actually a gasp from the few people watching.

Against Croatia, Iniesta won the official man of the match award. He has two this tournament. Over the last three tournaments, he has been named man of the match against Russia, Chile, Paraguay, Holland in the World Cup final, Italy and Croatia. No Spain player has played more than him over the last three tournaments. He has played 17 times. Which means he has been man of the match in over a third of the games he has played. In this historic four-year cycle for Spain, he is the only player to win the award at least once at each of the three tournaments.

The performance in the World Cup final, even beyond the 116th-minute winning goal, was especially stunning. In extra time, he took control and took responsibility. It is a responsibility that grows. Spain's possession is increasing and it is taking them longer to shoot. Control has become the obsession; defences have become more populous, space harder to find. Iniesta offers control but more than anyone else he offers that cutting edge, that sudden flash of creativity. Sergio Ramos describes him as the "enlightened one", a man "touched with a magic wand".

At Euro 2008, Spain had 56.6% of the ball and shot every 27.4 passes; in South Africa, that was 65.2%, a shot every 34.2 passes. This time round it is 67.4%, with Spain taking a shot every 42.9 passes. In that environment Iniesta has become even more important. He opened up the Italians and the Croats, while a swivel and swift pass released Jordi Alba for the first against France. Against Portugal, he had the game's best chance. "He imposes so much respect on the pitch," Ramos adds. "As a football lover, I am proud to have played with him. He makes the difference and does things that no one else can do."

Opponents look for him, surrounding him. Team-mates look to him, too. Vicente del Bosque has an almost allergic aversion to singling out players or elevating anyone above the others. So it means something when he says, as he did before Spain's second game: "Hopefully Andrés can be decisive – as he always is."

"He gets better with every game," says Cesc Fábregas. "He has not had an easy season with injury but he's in extraordinary form now. He carries the ball, he has creativity, the final pass, he's good in front of goal. He is a reference point for us. He is creative, different, and he assumes responsibility. The team looks for him during matches."

There is a simple reason: he is reliable. And in the big games even more so. "I've been playing with him since we were 15," says Torres, "and I have never, ever seen him play badly."


http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/blog/2012/jun/29/euro-2012-andres-iniesta-spain
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Re: Zidane is better than Iniesta

Post by Fade out on Fri Jun 29, 2012 7:50 pm

Jaime wrote:Originally it was going to be called Zidane > Xavi + Iniesta + Busquets but I thought it might do worms' head in.

Messiah will self-combust Very Happy
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Pras_tama

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Re: Zidane is better than Iniesta

Post by Pras_tama on Sat Jun 30, 2012 12:53 am

Let's put it this way....

(a)
---------------Busquets
-----Xavi------------------Zidane

Pedro-------Messi-------Villa/Zidane


(b)
-----------Deschamps
-Conte/Xavi----------Davids/Iniesta

----------Xavi/Iniesta


IMO team A look better on the paper



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