In what we assume must surely be some sort of first, Andres Iniesta has signed a new ‘lifetime’ contract with Barcelona.
In potted terms, the deal means that Iniesta has pledged (presumably on a rolling basis) the rest of his career to Barca, the club he joined as a 12-year-old boy in 1996, some 21 years ago.
After joining Iniesta to formally sign the paperwork at the Camp Nou, Barca president Josep Maria Bartomeu told the club website:
This club has grown through this agreement because after 118 years of history it’s the first time we have ever offered a footballer a lifelong contract.
This is a reward for Andrés’ exceptional career.
Iniesta has made 639 largely flawless appearances for Barca since making his first-team debut in 2001, winning a joint-record 30 titles – Lionel Messi also boasting the same number of trophies won to date.
Now 33, the honest truth is that Iniesta probably only has a smattering of good years left in the tank, making the dramatic, boundless wording of his new terms seem just a tad over-egged.
Still, if anybody deserves a job for life at Barca, it’s their resident midfield maestro and he’s already started this season like a house on fire, freed from the shackles of having to cover quite as many of his strikers’ defensive shortcomings as last year.
That said, he may still come to regret signing that contract when he’s 96-years-old and still cleaning toilets at Joan Gamper.