PSV Eindhoven playmaker Afellay will join Barca in January.
"Ibrahim Afellay is a player we've always been interested in because he's the ideal player for the Barcelona style. He's young, with a lot of experience, international, who can lose his marker, shoot from long range and play well down the wings. He reminds me a bit of Andres Iniesta because of the way he moves," said Zubizarreta on the official Barcelona website.
"He has to learn to play with this team, where there is a high level of competition. We have heard that he has a positive attitude and I think he knows what team he's coming to and which players he will be fighting with for a team place.
"We want to close relations with PSV nicely and not in a cold fashion by signing Afellay on a free transfer in the summer. That is positive in terms of implication. It is an excellent opportunity for both Afellay and Barcelona. The sporting and financial prospects that Barça can offer him are good."