Barcelona is one of the best teams in the world. Titles are won year after year as great players pull on the famous Catalonian blue and red. Barcelona have had some of the greatest footballers to ever grace a pitch. In this article, we will look at some of the best Barcelona players ever.
In this list we have included 10 Barcelona legends, who immensely contributed in making what the club currently is! Here is the list of 10 best Barcelona players ever –
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Quite simply, the most exciting player in the world during his Barcelona tenure. After a barren four years for the club, Joan Laporta decided to embark on a new project with its cornerstone centered around the enigmatic Brazilian.
He was brash, powerful, tricky, and an uninhibited play maker. His arrival restored Barcelona back to the elite, winning two La Liga titles, a Champions League (2006) and a Ballon d’Or (2005). He was so mesmerizing that in a match at the Santiago Bernabeu against Real Madrid, the Brazilian made the team in white look like amateurs en route to scoring two breath-taking goals that earned him a standing ovation from the crowd.
In July 2008, Ronaldinho left Barcelona to join Italian Serie A giants Milan on a three-year contract.
9. Pepe Samitier
The third-highest goalscorer in Barca’s history with 326 goals, Pepe Samitier made his debut for Barcelona in 1919 aged 17 and played for the club for 13 seasons.
He won two leagues and was nicknamed ‘the Grasshopper’ and ‘the Magician’ – long in the leg but not short on spellbinding skill.
He won silver with Spain in the 1920 Olympics, played a season for Real Madrid, and returned to Barca as coach, managing the club for three seasons winning a Liga title.
8. Ronald Koeman
One of the best Barcelona players ever, Ronaldo Koeman played for Barcelona from 1989 to 1995. The hero of Wembley, the man who ended the curse and gave Barca their first European Cup in 1992.
A pillar in the defence of the Dream Team, he also scored 102 goals for the club, many from free-kicks and penalties thanks to his great dead-ball skills. Off the pitch, he was known for his kindness and easy-going nature that made him even more of an idol for fans of the club.
7. Pep Guardiola
Slender, elegant and tactically aware, Pep Guardiola served as the linchpin of Johan Cruyff’s “Dream Team” that won four straight La Liga titles from 1991-1994, including the double in 1992—the year the club captured its first ever European Cup when Guardiola was just 20 years old.
An extension of his coach on the pitch, Guardiola relied on a combination of creativity, technique and ball movement, rather than physicality and pace. Captaining the team from 1997-2001, Pep was the chief inspiration for other La Maisa legends with similar characteristics such as Xavi, Andrés Iniesta and Cesc Fàbregas.
Left at a difficult time as Xavi later took the reins in midfield, but returned as coach to lead the club to their most glorious era guiding Barca to 14 trophies (2008-12).
6. Johan Cryuff
One of the greatest Barcelona legends and also one of the greats in football history and the best in his era, Cruyff changed Barcelona and revolutionised football as a player and a coach.
He won three Ballons D’Or (1971, 1973, 1974). His goal against Atletico Madrid remains one of the iconic images of Spanish football.
He had chosen Barca over Real Madrid despite the latter reaching an agreement with Ajax and he delivered Barca’s first league in 14 years at the end of that first campaign.
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5. Carlos Puyol
The great captain, a true Barcelona legend, an unforgettable figure for team-mates and rivales, he was always an example to others on the football field. Strength, heart and a love for the colours made him essential at the back for Barca.
Though not especially gifted technically, his fight and sacrifice saw him become Barca’s leader and earn a place among the true greats at the Catalan club. He won 21 trophies in total and will always be one of the poster boys for what “Mes Que un Club” represents.
4. László Kubala
So many people wanted to see Ladislao Kubala play Barcelona in the 1950s that they had to build a new 93,000 capacity Nou Camp to replace their old 60,000 capacity Camp de les Corts.
Life before Barca had been filled with danger. He escaped communist Hungary dressed as a Russian soldier and may have died in the 1949 air disaster that killed the great Torino side of the forties. Kubala was supposed to be representing them in a friendly against Benfica in Portugal but pulled out for family reasons and it saved his life enabling to go on write his name in the history books of Barcelona and play 19 times for Spain despite having already represented Hungary and Czechoslovakia.
He scored 194 goals and won four leagues as well as played in the 1961 European Cup final that Barca lost to Benfica.
3. Andres Iniesta
The man from Fuentealbilla who just seems to know exactly the right time to do everything on a football pitch. Whether going forward or dropping back, watching Iniesta work is like Picasso painting his canvas. Blessed with eagle like vision and mystifying touch, he often is able to create space that you didn’t even know existed.
He won four UCl titles with Barcelona. He came on at half time to change the game against Arsenal in Paris in 2006; his dramatic late winner at Stamford Bridge got Barca to the 2009 Rome final; he starred in the 2011 final at Wembley, and set up the first goal in Berlin in 2015.
One of Barca’s greatest … and he scored the most important goal in Spain’s history too,when he scored the winning goal in the World Cup final in 2010.
Iniesta left the club in 2018. He gets the no.4 spot in ‘best Barcelona players ever’.
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2. Xavi Hernandez
The best Spanish player in history. Formed at La Masia, he represents the values of the club like nobody else.
When he retired from Barcelona after 17 seasons in 2015, it was calculated that Xavi Hernandez had played 59,000 minutes for the club winning 25 trophies in the process. His record of 767 games may never be beaten.
He was the heartbeat of the team as they climbed to the summit of world football and, in the eyes of many supporters, he will never be replaced. They console themselves with the conviction that he will return as coach some day.
1. Lionel Messi
Messi is undoubtedly the no.1 in the list of ‘best Barcelona players ever’. When Catalan agent Josep Maria Minguella brought a 13-year-old Argentine to Barcelona for a trial in 2000 he told the club’s then technical director Charly Rexach that he was bringing him ‘the next Maradona’.
Considered by many to be the greatest player in history, let alone in the modern era, Leo Messi has been dazzling us since the very first time he stepped on the pitch. Whether it was scoring a hat-trick against Real Madrid at the age of 19 or pulling off the closest thing we have ever seen to Maradona’s “goal of the century” against Getafe, the Argentine wizard continues to invent new ways to amaze.
He has broken almost all the club and Liga records, while he has won five Ballons d’Or. He has also won four Champions Leagues and 34 titles overall with Barca. What the future holds for him and the club is anybody’s guess, but one thing is for certain. Leo Messi is the greatest Barcelona player of all-time, and there may never be anyone greater again.
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It concludes the list of best Barcelona players ever, leave your opinion in the comments.