Andres Iniesta Opens Up About His Battle With Depression

Andres Iniesta has enjoyed constant success during his time as a professional football, but away from the game, the 34-year-old has recently opened up on his struggle with depression in a heartbreaking interview.

The former Barcelona midfielder describes what it was like after the death of his close friend Dani Jarque.

Jarque, who played for Espanyol before he passed away in 2009, suffered a heart attack during pre-season training with the club.

Iniesta has now spoken about his friend in an interview with Spanish TV show El Hormiguero, revealing how he struggled to have an feelings during a period following his friend's death.

"You do not feel like you are yourself, you do not enjoy things. (You feel) that the people around you are just people, you have no feelings or passion." he said.

"You are empty inside and there comes a moment when you realise that you cannot go on (like that)."

"I was able to see that I needed someone to be able to get out of that situation. The most important thing is that I never lost hope."

Iniesta dedicated his famous winner in the 2010 World Cup final to his friend Jacque, revealing a t-shirt dedicated to the former Espanyol striker during his celebration.

He had the words: "Dani Jarque siempre con nosotros" (Dani Jarque always with us) written on the front, as millions tuned in to watch that Spain victory against Holland.

"I wanted to carry Dani with me and my other team-mates," he said after the game.

Image: PA
Image: PA

"We wanted to feel his strength. We wanted to pay tribute to him in the world of football and this was the best opportunity to do so.

"This is for Dani Jarque, for my family, for all of the people. It is the result of hard work over a long time and some difficult moments."

Iniesta's struggles are a prime example of how anybody, however successful, can suffer from depression.

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Jack Kenmare

Jack Kenmare is a writer at SPORTbible. He's interviewed some huge names in the world of sport, including Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Pele, Carles Puyol and Tim Henman. He dabbles in all things sport, but football is his biggest passion. He was once hit in the head by a wayward strike from Nicky Butt and lived to tell the tale.

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