A revitalised Andres Iniesta insists he never had any concerns over his future at Barcelona, despite lengthy negotiations over his new deal.
The Spanish club announced on Friday they had finally agreed a lifetime contract with the 33-year-old, who would otherwise have become a free agent at the end of the season.
The midfielder – who joined Barcelona from Albacete in 1996 – dismissed speculation last month that he had already agreed to an extension, raising the possibility of him ending his glittering career away from the Camp Nou.
However, after protracted talks between the two parties, Iniesta is happy to stay at the only club he has played for professionally.
“There’s never been any kind of problem between myself and the club,” Iniesta said.
“It’s simply that things have to run their natural course, you have to talk to find common ground and beyond that we just try to take care of things and be positive.
“If this should have happened earlier or in a different way, I don’t know about that. But this is how it has turned out.”
— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) October 6, 2017
Barcelona are keen to manage their captain’s minutes to prolong his impact on the first team, although the evergreen Iniesta has still started six of their seven LaLiga games this season.
While he picked up an injury last time out against Las Palmas, Iniesta believes he has enjoyed a new lease of life after a difficult 2016-17.
“I know how the world of football is. Last year, it looked like I was maybe done, but this year I’m living something of a rebirth,” he said.
“I know my mind and body, but every player is conscious of their possibilities. I’m thinking about having fun and continuing to have glory with this club.”
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