Valverde sends heartfelt message to Iniesta: Thank you for this possibility
- Andres Iniesta's Vissel Kobe will play a friendly against Barcelona this Saturday.
- Valverde highlights 'many things which united us'.
- There are currently three ex-Blaugrana players at Kobe.
FC Barcelona face Andres Iniesta's side Vissel Kobe on Saturday, July 27. This is going to be a rather emotional occasion given the strong connection between the two sides. Three former Blaugrana players are currently plying their trade for Kobe, namely, Andres Iniesta, Sergi Samper and David Villa. The iconic midfielder was the first to join the Japanese club.
During Friday's press conference ahead of the game, Ernesto Valverde sends a heartfelt message to his former captain. He says, as quoted by Marca:
"Thank you for the possibility of being here in Japan, inviting us to this city [Kobe]. There are many things which unite us with Vissel Kobe. The fact there are three of our former players [Iniesta, David Villa and Sergi Samper] here just makes this relationship closer."
WATCH ALSO: Andres Iniesta reunites with his Barca teammates ahead of Saturday's match:
Barcelona lost 2-1 to Chelsea in the first pre-season friendly game in Japan. Ivan Rakitic scored his side's only goal shortly before the final whistle. During the preseason, the Catalans will also face Arsenal in the traditional Joan Gamper Trophy at the Camp Nou stadium and travel to the United States for the double-header friendly against Napoli.
The Vissel Kobe match is scheduled for Saturday, July 27. Kick-off is at 11:00 AM CET.
By the way, Iniesta is expected to welcome yet another former Barcelona teammate at Vissel Kobe. According to the most recent reports by Belgian influential journalist Kristof Terreur, Thomas Vermaelen is set to join the Japanese side. He has allegedly already signed a contract until December 2021.