Were Vissel to sign the 33-year-old Barca playmaker, it would represent arguably the biggest transfer coup in J-League history.
"As it stands, he is an Atletico player and anything I say about him isn't going to change that".
"I'm grateful to (Louis) van Gaal for his trust and to all the coaches that I had before that taught me and helped me to get the nicest moment that I'd been chasing up to that time", Iniesta told Barcelona's YouTube channel in 2015.
"In the next 10 days I will try to pick the best option at all levels for myself".
"I try to enjoy each minute as there is not long to go and to be on the pitch is what I want".
But Lifan eventually came out and distanced themselves from the story, giving rise to reports about apparent interest in Iniesta from Japanese and Australian sides.More news: VP Pence's brother wins GOP nomination for Indiana US House seat
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"I won't name who but I do understand that A-League clubs have expressed interest, and that's a start", Gallop said on Thursday.
"It also offers Australia's lifestyle and we saw with [former Sydney FC star Alessandro] Del Piero and others that that is an attraction".
Kobe sports director Atsuhiro Miura insisted that reports club president Hiroshi Mikitani had offered the Spanish World Cup victor a three-year deal and a salary of $30 million were wide of the mark.
But Miura said reports of a deal that could be worth as much as €25million per year are wide of the mark.
"Honestly, that doesn't strike me as being realistic".
Miura admitted he had accompanied Mikitani to Spain to watch last weekend's "El Clasico" between Barcelona and Real Madrid but insisted talks with Iniesta "had not taken place".