06/13/2014 01:44 EDT | Updated 08/13/2014 05:59 EDT

Andres Iniesta: World Cup profile

The maestro of Spain’s formidable attacking force, Andres Iniesta and La Furia Roja are looking to cement their place as the greatest international side in history.

Why he's so special 

Masterful tactician who can control the game with the ball at his feet. Whether it’s the first, 12th, or 116th minute of a match, his tireless work rate sets the tone for club and country.

Famous moment 

Iniesta became a legend when he scored the match-winning goal in the 116th minute of the 2010 World Cup final. His elated celebration afterwards is one of the iconic images of the tournament’s history.

He said it 

- “There is no rule that says a footballer needs to be 'this high' and 'this wide.’”

What they're saying about him

"Iniesta is easily Spain's most complete player. He has everything." — Xavi, Barcelona and Spain midfielder


- Possibly the best pure passer in the world. Doggedly fights for possession in midfield, normally wins it, nearly always keeps it.


- His slight stature forces him to use means other than brute strength to fend off opponents.

Fun Fact 

If Real Madrid’s youth academy was in a different neighbourhood, Iniesta would probably be wearing their white jerseys today. Iniesta’s parents pulled him out of Los Galacticos’ youth academy when they saw that it was located right next to a red light district.

Barcelona convinced them to join their youth club, and the rest, as they say, is history.