Iniesta presents his World Cup final shirt to Espanyol

Iniesta presents his World Cup final shirt to Espanyol

Dani Jarque siempre con nosotros, he wrote on his shirt in the World Cup final, revealed after he scored the winning goal. It was a gesture of love, affection and respect towards a friend. Dani Jarque Andres, who died due to heart attack earlier last year was the club captain of FC Barcelona’s bitter city rivals RCD Espanyol.

On Thursday, Iniesta presented his shirt to Daniel Sanchez Llibre, President of RCD Espanyol. During his speech, almost breaking down into tears, he said, “It’s hard to control my emotions. It pains me a great deal to give this shirt away even though I think this is the best place for itI scored that goal, but he will be remembered too.” The ceremony was attended by families of Iniesta and Jarque, club officials from both Barcelona and Espanyol, along with other dignitaries from Barcelona.

Here is an official video released by Espanyol TV, along with a translation of what was said.

[youtube pw91-6HKfso Iniesta]

Xavi Andreu [Director of Communications at RCD Espanyol]

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. For the members and supporters of RCD Espanyol, it has left us speechless to see on the 11th of July of this year, the grand gesture of humility by Andres Iniesta in memory of our great captain, Dani Jarque [rest in peace], after scoring the goal which made Spain the world champion in South Africa. For many days, all of the followers of football will be able to reflect on the importance of the fundamental values of this sport, which surpasses even rivalries. Andres has remembered the value of friendship, simplicity and the spirit of a team. Thank you Andres. To us you’re an eternal friend, the same as the shirt, which everyone will see and comprehend [its meaning], in its spot at Gate 21, the number of our remembered captain Dani Jarque. A gesture that everyone will honor, like your football demonstrates the greatness and value of this sport which evokes so many emotions. Above all the best emotion, that we are all a part of a big family, the family of football.

Andres Iniesta

It will be tough not to get emotional, but thank you for being here. It pains me to separate myself from this shirt, but I think this is the best place for it. Thank you to Espanyol for the insignia [pin] and I think that…well I scored the goal but he will also be remembered for it. Thank you.

Daniel Sanchez Llibre [President of RCD Espanyol]

It’s a gesture that, since the day I saw that goal…I’ll tell you something, I already thought of him as a ‘crack’ [a great one] which we have all seen, but I told him ‘You are a crack not only on the pitch, but also off the pitch as well.’ Andres, thank you very much. Honestly for Espanyol and all of the pericos [Espanyol supporters], this is a gesture which I would say is hard to believe, but you in fact did it. Thank you very much on behalf of the club. Your life will surely be very triumphant because when someone does something like this, in the future when you retire, you will still be a person who is very loved within the Espanyol community and the entire world. Thank you very much and on behalf of the club, I present you with our most valued insignia which is made of gold and diamonds. I hope you keep it with a memory of this and above all, in memory of Dani Jarque.