Having represented the Catalan side for almost two decades, Iniesta is reportedly set for a stint in the Chinese Super League.
The 33-year-old has played a staggering 669 times for Barca and is an icon at the Nou Camp. But once he officially announces his decision, thoughts will swiftly turn to his replacement. A technically gifted, tactically aware, all-around genius, Iniesta will be nigh-on impossible to replicate.
The club would be looking at spending hundreds of millions to replace him but fortunately they may not have to. Barcelona talisman Lionel Messi believes there could already be a ready-made Iniesta replacement waiting in the wings.
Similar to Iniesta, Carles Alena joined the famous La Masia academy at the age of just eight. The central midfielder progressed through the ranks and made 69 appearances for Barcelona B, scoring 14 goals. Alena made his La Liga debut on a year ago, coming on as a second-half substitute for Ivan Rakitic in a 4–1 away rout of Granada.
Last summer the 20-year-old signed a three-year professional deal with Barcelona, including a release clause of £65m. Manager Ernesto Valverde has already said that as of next season, Alena will be a first team player to all intents and purposes.
According to Don Balon, Messi is believed to be particularly excited by the prospect who has 13 Spain U19 caps to his name.