Sports Nicknames - Maestro, El Ilusionista

Andres Iniesta is a name familiar to any fan of football. The Barcelona playmaker is widely considered one of the best of all time thanks to his vision, dribbling and general versatility as a midfielder. He commanded the midfield of Barcelona so well that he got the nickname of "Maestro", in addition to others like "El Cerebro" (the brain) and "El Caballero Palido" (The Pale Knight).

Andres Iniesta - Profile illustration.  Drawing.  Art.  A genius when it comes to the game of football, appropriately  nicknamed Maestro and El Ilusionista by fans and journalists.

Iniesta broke through Barcelona's La Masia youth system in 2002, but didn't consistently start for the first team until 2004. There, he played in 37 of 38 league games. He continued this rise, with his manager Frank Rijkaard praising his ability and willingness to play anywhere on the field. Iniesta would continue to get praise from fellow professionals like Wayne Rooney, as well as standing ovations from rival fans.

His midfield generalship continued through the 2010s, becoming captain with the retirement of Carles Puyol. In 2018, he finally left Barcelona for Japanese club Vissel Kobe. He has won just about every trophy in the Spanish game multiple times. 9 Spanish league titles, 6 Copa del Rey trophies and 4 Champions League titles are the highlights at the club level. However, he also helped Spain as a country to 2 European Championships and a World Cup win in 2010.

It's hard to say just how great of a player Iniesta was by looking at statistics. He provided a good amount of assists, but wasn't particularly impressive in front of goal. Yet, he was consistently placed in "Best Players in Europe" lists and came in 2nd, 3rd and 5th in the Ballon d'Or competition. Such was his ability to control and lead the midfield to victory when it mattered.


Andres Iniesta was also nicknamed "El Ilusionista" because of his ability to make nearly impossible passes to his teammates with pin point accuracy.


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