Iniesta vs Zidane

Discussion in 'Football Forum' started by TheNewEra, Jan 11, 2016.

?

Who was greater in his prime ?

Poll closed Jun 4, 2016.
  1. Iniesta

    36.1%
  2. Zidane

    63.9%
  1. Dec 4, 2018

    Stocar Full Member

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    Yet they were mostly reduced to their own half against Spain, just like every other team at the time. What gives? Where was that allegedly superior "direct football"?
  2. Dec 4, 2018

    berbatrick Full Member Scout

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    You know there was a world cup in 2010?
  3. Dec 4, 2018

    Suedesi Full Member

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    Better team doesn't necessarily equate to a fun team to watch. Anyways, Germany's best player was suspended for that match and as a young team they didn't rise to the occasion. They made full amends 4 years later, whereas Spain didn't qualify from the group.
  4. Dec 4, 2018

    Suedesi Full Member

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    I just realized @Infordin can't truly appreciate a Madrid player - whereas most neutrals would be more objective in assessing two players.
  5. Dec 4, 2018

    berbatrick Full Member Scout

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    Before 2004ish, Keane,giggs, Beckham, Cole/Yorke, ruud had an equal or higher profile than scholes, seasons were associated with their numbers or performances. After 2006, ronaldo, Rooney, etc. I think 2009/10 was the one season when scholes was obviously a key player and a standout in midfield, but that season is remembered for Rooney just like Barca seasons are associated with Messi or msn or ronaldinho.

    Just the nature of the job both scholes and xavi did.
  6. Dec 4, 2018

    adexkola Arsenal supporter

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    Was it them that were ugly, or teams they faced that made the contests ugly?
  7. Dec 4, 2018

    De Portago Full Member

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    Germany was overrated in 2010 IMO, due to two factors. They had a plethora of younger fairly unknown players which lowered the expectations initially, and then benefited from playing England in the 1/8, and a completely inept Argentina in 1/4. To me it was hardly a surprise that they couldn't handle Spain which was the first team they met in the knockouts that was competently coached, and obviously had better players as well.
  8. Dec 4, 2018

    Suedesi Full Member

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    They were ugly.
  9. Dec 4, 2018

    adexkola Arsenal supporter

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    Eh, I disagree.
  10. Dec 4, 2018

    manunited1919 Full Member

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    If you want eye-candy, go with Zidane.

    But if you ask me who I would rather have in the team to unlock a tight defense, Iniesta all the way.
  11. Dec 4, 2018

    meninred New Member

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    True but nobody really starred in that worldcup.they just played well.
  12. Dec 4, 2018

    adexkola Arsenal supporter

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    Xavi starred. Maybe Robben?
  13. Dec 4, 2018

    Suedesi Full Member

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    Yeah dude, the 4-6-0 formation from Del Bosque was super exciting! The system produced so many shots on goal, so much goalmouth drama and so few unnecessary triangles in midfield between Alonso, Busquets, Xavi, Iniesta, Silva and Fabregas. Spain was always so exciting playing with a double pivot of Busquets / Alonso and no strikers, it definitely drew comparisons to Brazil 1970 and Holland 1974! I mean 8 goals in 7 matches will never be bettered in our lifetime.

    :houllier:
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2018
  14. Dec 4, 2018

    Br1_ovi New Member

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    You dont know what the fuk are talking about. Silva and Fabregas werent important in 2010 (they were in the 08 Euro). Spain played all games with Alonso-Busquets-Xavi in midfield, Iniesta creating the magic in the last third and Villa & Torres as strikers. Torres was in bad form and Pedro replaced him in the semis and final. When Spain played "4-6-0" was in 2012, and the funny thing is they outplayed all teams except Portugal in that Euro, the best team of the 3 winning sides was that one in 2012, rock solid in defense based on 99% posession.
  15. Dec 4, 2018

    adexkola Arsenal supporter

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    I mean... there is a spectrum of exciting, and Brazil and Holland are definitely on one end of that. I wouldn't place Spain on the other end.

    And again, goals will be limited when one side shows up with no attacking ambition and parks a 747.
  16. Dec 4, 2018

    Suedesi Full Member

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    It's okay for Spanish people to idolize the 2008-2012 generation - I mean up to that point you had never won anything in international football, so you're obviously going to fawn over your heroes. As a neutral, I found that generation very skillful and very boring. Blow me.
  17. Dec 4, 2018

    sullydnl Ross Kemp's caf ID

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    It isn't that those games weren't dour but rather that the dourness of them came from the way the opposition approached them as much as Spain's own style. Spain were so dominant at the time that teams adjusted their approach to facing them to a degree that was unprecedented in my lifetime of watching international football. Spain's approach didn't make those games dull but rather the combination of their approach and the countermeasures their opponents were fearfully forced to adopt (deep defence, as many men behind the ball as possible, nullify Spain at whatever cost to your own attack). Few teams can play exciting football with their opponents parking the bus so thoroughly and unapologetically. Most teams aren't good enough to provoke that kind of reaction from the opposition either.
  18. Dec 4, 2018

    Suedesi Full Member

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    Watching Spain in 2010 I was bored to tears. No, not because of the lack of goals. But because of Spain’s methodically slow tempo. They would just walk around the pitch and pass the ball between themselves looking for an opportunity to spring the perfect pass. Even when they were winning and they were in the opponents penalty box, they played keep-away instead of trying to score their second goal.

    Look, they're aiming to win not necessarily entertain - I get that. However, as a spectator I don't have to like that.
  19. Dec 4, 2018

    Stocar Full Member

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    So, in your book Spain was regularly the more cynical team in those admittedly dull and one sided match ups? Even though they played exclusively with a high line and on the front foot, while the other teams rarely ventured out of their own half? There isn't a high line that can't be got at. Why didn't all these supposedly "brave" and "direct" teams have a go at them? Too scared by a genuinely dominant side perhaps? Everyone well remembered 2008 and knew what Barcelona (with players that formed the core of NT) regularly did to teams that dared to play openly, so they decided not to even try.
  20. Dec 4, 2018

    Demyanenko_square_jaw Full Member

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    I only really remember Switzerland and Paraguay parking the bus against Spain(probably Honduras too, but can't recall anything from that game). Other teams were out-possessed but played quite balanced. Chile certainly didn't and were doing well until the torres dive getting a player sent off/second goal one two took the edge and balance out of the game. I rooted againt Spain after that until the final where the Netherlands were so dirty it was impossible to support them.
  21. Dec 4, 2018

    Stocar Full Member

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    And to get back on topic, Iniesta was one of the main reasons for that sort of unprecedented and enduring dominance both on club and NT level. Which doesn't get enough deserved praise, because it wasn't based on swashbuckling heroic individualism, but more on subtlety and intricate teamplay.
  22. Dec 4, 2018

    Br1_ovi New Member

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    Fine, but they didn't play 4-6-0. Only in 2012 in some games.
  23. Dec 4, 2018

    Sauldogba New Member

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    In hindsight i think its safe to say that Spain were the most boring team to win a World Cup in recent memory.
    Never thought it at the time but looking back at it its true.

    Probably the same with their last win euro win as well.That being said their 2008 euro team is probably the best team i have seen to win it.
  24. Dec 5, 2018

    Pires_7 Banned

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    Zidane was the better player in my opinion.
  25. Dec 5, 2018

    Infordin Full Member

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    Nothing to do with the fact that Zidane was a Madrid player. I consider Redondo one of the best DMs ever, for example.

    Also, the only reason why we are even arguing about international careers, is because Iniesta is so far ahead of Zidane for club that its not even remotely debatable.
  26. Dec 5, 2018

    Gio 6 times Redcafe Draft Winner

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    Aye, as exhilirating as Del Piero was before the injury, their decline was mainly down to an ageing team. Their dominance of Italian and European football since the mid-1990s was built on a rock solid midfield and defensive unit which had aged to the point where much of the core were the wrong side of 30 (Deschamps, Di Livio, Conte, Ferrara), compounded by the injury of Del Piero and the failure of Henry/Ancelotti to fill his boots, and the sale of the evergreen Torricelli not helping the ageing legs issue. The triple investment in Buffon/Thuram/Nedved addressed shortfalls in the team that had been apparent since 98/99.
  27. Dec 5, 2018

    hasanejaz88 Full Member

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    Iniesta was absolutely amazing as an individual but you always got the feeling he was second fiddle to Xavi, who was the maestro of the Spanish and Barca teams.

    With Zidane, even with the great players he played with, though non as great and Xavi/Messi, he always had the aura of being the head of the team. The leader on the pitch and one to pull them out, organizing attacks and sometimes pulling magic.

    I would have to go with Zidane.
  28. Dec 5, 2018

    sullydnl Ross Kemp's caf ID

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    Hmmm, I wonder. If Spanish football fans were voting for the greatest Spanish player of all time, would Iniesta not finish ahead of Xavi? Between scoring the goal that won them their only world cup, being MOTM in that same game, being MOTM in the Euro 2012 final and being Player of the Tournament at Euro 2012 too, I would expect most people to say Iniesta had outshone Xavi on the international stage.
  29. Dec 5, 2018

    giorno Full Member

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    There have been several such polls. Xavi won them all iirc
  30. Dec 5, 2018

    Keeps It tidy Hates Messi

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    Was Iniesta named MOTM of the Euro 2012 final because Xavi completely dominated that match.
  31. Dec 5, 2018

    sullydnl Ross Kemp's caf ID

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    Interesting, figured someone must have asked at some point.

    Indeed he was, for what the official MOTM is worth.
  32. Dec 5, 2018

    Demyanenko_square_jaw Full Member

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    Selling Jugovic too. I thought Juve played some of their best football the one season with Zidane and him combining, that duo had the potential to be a great midfield one. If i remember rightly Lippi was against the sale, but Jugovic seemed a bit of a wanderer/mercenary that moved often which backfired on his career in the end.
  33. Dec 6, 2018

    tomaldinho1 Full Member

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    Zidane
  34. Dec 6, 2018

    SilentStrike New Member

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    Easily Zidane. I also agree with those saying Spain was by far the most boring team to win the world cup in recent memory. Despite all their big names, mostly a result of the massive hype that revolved around Barca back then, their football was just so dull and slow. I wonder if Barcelona would have been equally as boring if Messi didn't play there. The luck against Paraguay, loss to Switzerland, Muller getting suspended in the most rudiculous way ahead of the Germany match, the fact that the winning goal against Holland came from a goalkick that so obviously should have been a corner, and not to get started on the endless sidepasses and backpasses that put all fans to sleep.

    Holland wasn't any better though, I think 2010 was just a very average world cup and probably Germany played the most exciting football, back when Löw wasn't trying to copy Del Bosque's tactics.
  35. Dec 7, 2018

    Zehner Full Member

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    Look at City, they play very refreshing football without a player on Messi's level. That's what distibguished Guardiola and Aragones from Del Bosque, they put much more emphasis on attacking patterns and "productive" possession in dangerous areas.

    But I also think that Spain under Del Bosque gets downplayed nowadays, they weren't nearly as boring as some reviews made you think. I believe it is due to their longevity on the top. 6-8 years is a very long time.
  36. Dec 7, 2018

    ThierryFabregas New Member

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    I have Zidane's goal/assist stats:

    Games Goals Assists
    1990-1991 Cannes 28 1 - 4th
    1991-1992 Cannes 31 5 - 19th
    1992-1993 Bordeaux 35 10 6 4th
    1993-1994 Bordeaux 34 6 8 4th
    1994-1995 Bordeaux 37 6 4 7th
    1995-1996 Bordeaux 34 6 10 16th
    1996-1997 Juventus 29 5 2 1st
    1997-1998 Juventus 32 7 5 1st
    1998-1999 Juventus 25 2 2 6th
    1999-2000 Juventus 32 4 3 2nd
    2000-2001 Juventus 33 6 14 2nd
    2001-2002 Real Madrid 31 7 7 3rd
    2002-2003 Real Madrid 33 9 9 1st
    2003-2004 Real Madrid 33 6 8 4th
    2004-2005 Real Madrid 29 6 5 2nd
    2005-2006 Real Madrid 29 9 9 2nd

    They're good but not really outstanding are they? His 10 years in top leagues (Italy/Spain) he managed 61 goals and 64 assists. Comparatively Figo in La Liga got 68 goals and 106 assists in 10 years in La Liga. Pires in just 6 PL seasons scored 62 goals and 41 assists. Maybe unfair given he played as an 8 but he did have a free role and roamed. Is Xavi a fairer comparison? Xavi got 184 assists in 700 matches. I only took 306 of Zidane's games but he clearly isn't nearly as prolific as Xavi and he doesn't have a season like Xavi who got 20 league assists either. Although in turn Xavi only scored 85 goals in those 700+ matches

    In turn Iniesta didn't have greatest stats either, so the point is moot in this discussion. Both of them dictated games and controlled possession better than most and it obviously isn't all about end product but I do wonder if Zidane was a little inconsistent as talented as he was.

    Overall I'd take Zidane over Iniesta but what about Xavi? That's the tougher question.
  37. Dec 7, 2018

    Don Alfredo Full Member

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    Where are those 6-8 years coming from?

    Their dominance started in 2008 and the last tournament they have been good at was 2012, that is just 4 years. In 2014 they crashed out in the group stages, in 2016 they lost in the round of last 16 and the same in 2018.
  38. Dec 7, 2018

    Zehner Full Member

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    My bad, I meant 4-6 years because they were still the favouritein 2014.
  39. Dec 7, 2018

    giorno Full Member

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    Del Bosque took over after Euro 2008. His Spain was great until 2013. So 4 years. And yes, they were considerably less vertical and considerably more defensive and prudent than Aragones' version