France Football have formally apologised to Andres Iniesta for having never bestowed the sainted Barcelona midfielder with the Ballon d’Or during his career.
With it looking increasingly likely that Iniesta’s near-flawless 22-year stint at the Camp Nou will be coming to an end in the next month or so, France Football have moved to atone for their lamentable oversight.
Indeed, the French magazine have published a message entitled ‘Forgive Us, Andres’ in which editor Pascal Ferre expresses his deep regret that Iniesta was never given the prestigious award in what he refers to as a “democratic anomaly”.
Ferre laments the fact that Iniesta only ever finished second (2010) and third (2012) in the Ballon d’Or vote, which he speculates was possible due to his inseparable bond with Xavi, which made it difficult to decorate one without the other.
What follows is not quite an editorial. it was all agreed on (by France Football) a while ago to avoid any misunderstanding. This is an act of homage.
For us, (Iniesta) wasn’t just a player, he was the player.
His generosity, team play and altruism has certainly deprived him of an even more majestic recognition (the Ballon d’Or).
He has proven that the brain is definitely the most important thing when it comes to being a champion.
Iniesta is one of the great absences when it comes to Ballon D’or winners. This is painful to us.
We can only hope that a divine performance at the World Cup helps us to repair this democratic anomaly.
Unfortunately, that’s about as much as Pies can translate thanks to our somewhat limited grasp of French.
Still, you get the picture.