Barca insist Iniesta is staying
By Lucas Brown
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Joan Laporta insists he will not let Andres Iniesta join arch-rivals Real Madrid.Barcelona president Joan Laporta has moved quickly to insist that the club have no intention of letting Andres Iniesta join arch-rivals Real Madrid.
Reports in Spain had suggested that Real were contemplating a é¼60million (£40million) bid for Iniesta, which would trigger his release clause.
However, Barca chief Laporta insists there is no way Iniesta would leave the club.
"Iniesta is not for sale. He is part of the heart of Barca and is a key player for us," Laporta explained.
"He has incredible ability and knows that he is considered to be an integral part of the team.
"It is just not possible for him to leave. Iniesta does not have a price and he is very happy here.
"We always value our players and they earn what they deserve.
"Iniesta is highly valued and he knows that is how he is thought of.
"For that reason there are not problems and his contract is good for both parties.
"He is a player of unique quality and we consider him to be a member of the team and the club."
"He is destined to end his career here."
Iniesta was also quick to pledge his future to the club following the links to Real.
"I was very surprised," Iniesta explained.
"There is nothing you can do to stop this kind of thing, but I want to repeat that my desire has always been to stay here.
"When I say that want to retire at Barca, I mean that with all my heart."
Real have since denied having any interest in the player.
A statement from the club read: "We dismiss totally any knowledge of the news published today.
"This story is not true and the club not has had no contact with the player or his agent."