Andres Iniesta has made it clear that UEFA were wrong to leave out his Barcelona teammates in its shortlist for the Best Player in Europe Award.
Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Antoine Griezmann will battle it out to be crowned UEFA’s best player of the past season on August 25, yet Iniesta hinted Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi deserved to finish higher than fourth and fifth respectively.
“I have the impression that the players who have joined are of a very high level,” the midfielder said at a Press conference ahead of Barca’s Wembley friendly against Liverpool on Saturday.
“They are young lads who have already shown their importance, and they’ll grow in line with expectations.
“Barcelona must try to improve every year and what we did last year alone won’t be enough to win trophies this year.
“[On his future], I’ve been here for many seasons and I’ve always had the impression that you have to compete with the best, and this year is no exception.
“Nothing has changed this year when compared with the previous ones. If that [competition] gave me fear or uncertainty, I wouldn’t be here.
“[On Denis Suarez], I wish him all the luck in the world and that he maintains his progress, like he has done in recent years.
“[On his captaincy], it’s been very good and I hope it goes as well as it did last year.
“[On problems between Claudio Bravo and Marc-Andre ter Stegen], I don’t perceive anything new [from them].
“They’re players in this squad and I havent seen anything different from previous years. The situation is normal and I hope it remains so.
“[On Messi], no-one has ever doubted his conduct at the club. Nothing’s changed. Leo’s feeling very good, as he always has.
“I’ve always seen him as one more player and hopefully he keeps it that way because we’ll be closer to meeting our goals.
“[On the UEFA Best Player podium], I’d have chosen other players.”