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Top 10 Barça players of the decade



Photo by GIUSEPPE CACACE/AFP via Getty Images

Collective success is important, but to reach it you need a group of warriors who leave their hearts on the court. Each player has an important weight in all the successes that the Catalan club achieved in the past decade. That’s why we bring the Top 10 of the best Barça players in the decade.

FC Barcelona is the team that has the most victories, goals and better results in the past decade. The reality is that the Catalan club dominated these last 10 years.

Beyond the good coaches that we have had, something that stands out this decade and those responsible for our success were the players. Without them the great majority of titles wouldn’t have been possible, their importance and their contributions were fundamental for the best team of the decade.

Collective success is important but we must also give credit to those players who made it possible. There were better players than others and each contributed different things to the club, but each and every one of them were key pieces in the past decade. This is why we bring the Top 10 of the best Barça players in the decade.

This ranking is based on certain rules considering how many years the team member played in the club, collective titles, individual prizes and statistics for each of the players. Let’s start with the top.

#10: Jordi Alba

We started this ranking with Jordi Alba. The Spanish player arrived in Barcelona in 2012 from Valencia and since then he has been a Azulgrana player. Jordi had already had an experience as culé. His love for the club began in La Masia a couple of years ago.

Fast, skilled and a great asset in counterattacks. Alba has been a guarantee for this team in both attack and defense. Little by little, it has developed into a more mature and smarter player, especially in the offensive aspect. Last season we were all surprised with his 17 assists, his personal record in a football year. He created one of the deadliest plays of the coaches that have passed through the club. That famous overflow by the left band to find a hole back where Messi is to finish off. Undoubtedly a play that gave us many goals.

Jordi Alba has been instrumental in this decade, when the team is absent, but when he is present it is a blessing for the Blaugrana team. Hope to have many more seasons with this player.

Statistics in the past decade (just in FC Barcelona):


#9: Dani Alves

The Brazilian flavor in FC Barcelona can never be lacking. We couldn’t do this top without considering Dani Alves.

Dani started this decade as culé. However, in 2016 he decided to change his air and continued his career in Juventus. As a Blaugrana player, Alves was a different. His gift to get the ball from behind, his exuberance at the time of occupying an entire band without help, his quality to integrate into the pass chains and his talent to, being a defense, create occasions autonomously made him an easy solution , natural and very reliable to consider him indisputable in the XI.

Not only was he a player with a pure talent, but it was also very funny to watch him play. He transmitted that Brazilian blood in the club, something that involuntarily made the team better. We saw it when he showed his support with Éric Abidal who was suffering cancer. Alves offered to donate his liver to the French player who at that time needed a donor. Such actions made the Brazilian a great guarantee in the team’s locker room. Excellent player. Better person.

Statistics in the past decade (just in FC Barcelona):


#8: Xavi Hernández

The player with the most matches played in the club. A teacher who together with Andrés Iniesta formed the best duo in the midfield of FC Barcelona. He started his career at the club but unfortunately he had to leave it in 2015, so he only played as a Catalan the first 5 years of the decade.

Xavi is in this position not because he’s worse than those above it in this ranking. But Xavi played only 5 years and in his last 2 years in the club his contributions fell significantly. Otherwise, the Spanish midfielder would be even higher.

In these last 10 years he has won prizes such as the FIFA Bronze Ball (2 times) in 2010 and 2011. He was present at the best XI of the year of FIFA in 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013. Second place as the best player in Europe for UEFA in 2011. Xavi also won the Champions League twice and retired with a treble. He left the club in the best way.

Its individual quality is perfect for the philosophy of the club. An architect of the game. To date has cost the club to look for a replacement like him. Arthur and De Jong arrived but they are still far behind what Xavi represented in the Blaugrana team.

Few players mark an era, Xavi did it. A pity that he has never won a gold ball but doesn’t need it to be recognized as one of the best in history. Hopefully see him in a few more years back at the club. But this time, as a coach.

Statistics in the past decade (just in FC Barcelona):


#7: Sergio Busquets

Arguably one of the best players in history in his position. He innovated that position of DM with his great defensive talent but also, for his great vision of the game. Pep Guardiola left men like Yaya Touré or Seydou Keita to give Busquets a definite opportunity. All that confidence made the Spanish midfielder what he is right now.

He doesn’t have the credit of Xavi or Iniesta but the reality is that the three depended on everyone together. Xavi and Iniesta were just as important as Busquets. Many coaches enjoyed having this player, a confidant who saw everything and that the team that had it already had a giant advantage over the rival.

Difficult to explain everything Busi offers to the team. His height, ball handling, vision, positioning, but what helped Busquets were Xavi and Vilanova. The difference between success and failure is the desire to improve, Busquets didn’t fall behind and innovated. He learned to be the one to take the ball, to be the one to start the play, surprised the rivals, not only Xavi or Iniesta were the ones who did that work, but also a 1.89 meter tall warrior could do the same as them.

Little by little he has won the recognition of football, but he is the most underrated player in history. No individual prize and he didn’t participate in any best FIFA XI of the year. The true fans of this sport know that there is no one like “The Octopus”.

Statistics in the past decade (just in FC Barcelona):


#6: Neymar Jr

After a hard time for the Blaugranas, Neymar arrived to form a historic duo with Lionel Messi who later became a lethal trident alongside Luis Suárez.

The Brazilian generated many controversies when he left the club in 2017 to become the most expensive signing in history but what he did during his time at the club was worthy of positioning him in the sixth position of this ranking.

Neymar made seeing this sport very easy. His understanding with Messi and his quick adaptation to the team left us with the fact that Neymar was going to be the next figure in the Catalan club after Messi retired. Dribbles, goals, vision, his incredibly fast movement with the ball, speed changes, very fun to see him play.

In 2015 he was the top scorer in the Copa del Rey with 7 goals and top scorer of the UCL with 10 goals. He was also considered in the best team of the year of FIFA and third place in the voting for the Golden Ball.

He was a hero in the Berlin final against Juventus and hero in the Comeback against PSG scoring 2 goals in the last 3 minutes of the match and assisting Sergi Roberto in the winning goal.

Neymar was the most important Barça player behind Messi but the player’s need to be the figure of a team caused his departure from the club.

Statistics in the past decade (just in FC Barcelona):


#5: Gerard Piqué

The years pass but Gerard Piqué continues to demonstrate his high level.

Last season many fans doubted Piqué after his worst start of the season in his career, they thought it was over but little by little he regained his high level.

When he arrived at the club, he had a few minutes until an injury to Rafa Márquez, which was an opportunity for Gerard, who took the place. A player with a great attitude who learned a lot from Puyol and throughout his time at the club has matured to become a reference and mentor for young central defenders, such as Lenglet and Umtiti.

“El Presidente” was part of the best XI of the year by FIFA in 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2016. In 2010 he was considered the best defender in La Liga.

Piqué has a great skill in the air game, the turns with the ball, the entrances, he presses very well, his speed to defend counterattacks. It is true that Pique had some difficult years when Pep left the club, but he knew how to resurface with the arrival of Luis Enrique, he recovered all those characteristics he had lost. A legend of Spanish football.

Statistics in the past decade (just in FC Barcelona):


#4: Ter Stegen

He arrived in the 2014-2015 season being a substitute for Claudio Bravo, little by little he has been winning the minutes until he became one of the best goalkeepers in the world.

Ter Stegen has a vision and stretched from another planet. But what this player has in particular is not his height or his great stops but the ability he has with his feet. He knows how to move the ball, which has already allowed him to have 2 assists this season. He has cold blood and is not afraid of any rival attacker.

The German goalkeeper has the facility to sacrifice his body so that the opponent does not score a goal. He was crucial in the 2015 Champions League, without him we would probably have scored many more goals. In the following seasons, in La Liga, it was for which many games that we could have lost, we didn’t because of Ter Stegen. The German wall appears when the rest of the team doesn’t work. This goalkeeper never disappoints.

Despite having reached the club in 2014, Ter Stegen deserves this position for all those games that saved us. Games in which he was a hero. When we talk about prizes or rankings, attackers or midfielders usually come to mind. We always forget the goalkeeper, this time it’s different, he has shown that he is one of the best in the team. Even if he’s a goalkeeper. Wouldn’t be surprised to see him in a few years as Captain in the Blaugrana team.

Statistics in the past decade (just in FC Barcelona):

Undefeated goal89

#3: Luis Suárez

The Uruguayan fury arrived at Camp Nou to form a lethal trident with Messi and Neymar. Years go by and Luis Suarez continues to score goals and attend week after week.

When he arrived in 2014, he couldn’t debut until months later because of a penalty. It was no problem for Suarez. Despite starting his career at FC Barcelona late, his ability to adapt was incredibly fast. He continues to show that he has been one of the best signings in the history of the club.

An impressive fact was in 2016 when at the time of the rivalry history Messi / Ronaldo and playing in a club where the main offensive weapon was Messi, it was the Uruguayan who surprised everyone to win the golden boot scoring the odd amount of 40 goals in La Liga.

He was the top reference in the 2015 Club World Cup, being the top scorer with 5 goals and winning the tournament’s gold ball. The Uruguayan was also crucial in all the games against Real Madrid always doing great performances.

As if that were not enough, El Pistolero in just 5 years in the club has managed to be the fourth historical top scorer of the Catalan club with a total of 190 goals. You can still beat the number 3 place that occupies Kubala with 194 goals and the number 2 place of César Rodríguez with 232 goals.

Statistics in the past decade (just in FC Barcelona):


#2: Andrés Iniesta

In position number 2 we have Andrés Iniesta. A player who didn’t have the best physique or the best height but was a wizard with the ball. Filtered passes, dribbles, connections with Xavi, I had everything.

In 2012 Iniesta won the UEFA prize for best player in Europe, beating Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. He was second in the Golden Ball in 2010 and third in 2012. The magician participated in the best XI of the year of FIFA from 2010 to 2017. Andrés won the best midfielder in La Liga in the years 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 .

Unfortunately Iniesta left the club in 2018 to play Vissel Kobe, a Japanese first division team.

The iconic number “8” of Barcelona was able to lift La Liga for the last time in 2018, despite not having won the Champions League as his teammate Xavi when he left the club, Iniesta’s farewell moved the entire world. Fans of all teams recognized his greatness.

Iniesta spent a lifetime in the club. He is not physically present but sentimentally in all the Catalans. A different player who in this decade was very important to win many of the titles as he was in the 2015 Champions League. Iniesta assisted Rakitic’s goal in the final and was named player of the match. Iniesta marked an era of glory and we will always remember this historic player.

Statistics in the past decade (just in FC Barcelona):


#1: Lionel Messi

There is no doubt here. We reach the end of this ranking with Lionel Messi. He was not only the best player of the Barça decade but also the best player of the world football decade.

Messi was the reason that this team was the best of the decade. There are no words to describe his greatness and how brilliant his decade was.

The GOAT surpassed Gerd Muller’s record for top scorer in a year. Messi ended up scoring 91 goals in 2012 to overcome an almost impossible record.

Messi won the Golden Ball in the years: 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015 and 2019. He acquired the Golden Boot in the years: 2010, 2012, 2013, 2017, 2018, 2019. He won the Best award in 2019.

The Rosario’s guy scored many important goals to win each and every one of the trophies that FC Barcelona won in the decade. Without his goals or assists, statistically speaking, Barça were closer to the decline than the leadership in La Liga, we wouldn’t have passed the group stage in UCL and would have been eliminated prematurely from the Copa Del Rey year after year.

Messi knows how to surprise us every single season. He dominated all the individual prizes to the point of not winning many of them for being the best. A victim of his own success. The Argentinian is a player who appears once every 50 years, maybe we will never have someone of his caliber, someone from another planet.

“This Barca will be remembered as Messi’s Barca. He’s well above anything else I’ve ever seen. He’s an alien.”

– Carles Puyol

Not only is he the best player of this decade, he is the best player in football history. No one or nothing is comparable to the genius of this genius. We could put all the records and feats he has achieved but it would never end.

Lionel is ready for another decade of great achievements. Now as captain, sure he’ll raise many trophies and will be, as he always has been, an example to follow in this sport.

Statistics in the past decade (just in FC Barcelona):


This is the end of the top 10 best Barça players in this decade. A lot of talent in these players who gave us many titles in the past 10 years. Would also like to mention other players who had great importance in the team but were not mentioned in the ranking. Those are: Mascherano, Pedro, Valvdés, Puyol, Sergi Roberto and Iván Rakitic. Hopefully see more brilliant players in the coming years.

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