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Carles Puyol

Carles Puyol

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Carles Puyol i Saforcada (ˈkarɫəs puˈjɔɫ; born 13 April 1978) is a Spanish
Spain
Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

 footballer who plays for FC Barcelona
FC Barcelona
Futbol Club Barcelona , also known as Barcelona and familiarly as Barça, is a professional football club, based in Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain....

 and the Spanish national team
Spain national football team
The Spain national football team represents Spain in international association football and is controlled by the Royal Spanish Football Federation, the governing body for football in Spain. The current head coach is Vicente del Bosque...

.

Mainly a central defender, he can also play on either flank, especially as a right back. He also served as a longtime team captain for his only club FC Barcelona
FC Barcelona
Futbol Club Barcelona , also known as Barcelona and familiarly as Barça, is a professional football club, based in Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain....

 after taking over from Luis Enrique
Luís Enrique Martínez García
Luis Enrique Martínez García , known as Luis Enrique, is a retired Spanish footballer, and the current head coach of Serie A club A.S. Roma...

 in August 2004, going on to appear in more than 500 official games for the team and win 15 major titles, notably five La Liga
La Liga
The Primera División of the Liga Nacional de Fútbol Profesional , commonly known as La Liga or, for sponsorship reasons, Liga BBVA since 2008, is the top professional association football division of the Spanish football league system...

 and three UEFA Champions League
UEFA Champions League
The UEFA Champions League, known simply the Champions League and originally known as the European Champion Clubs' Cup or European Cup, is an annual international club football competition organised by the Union of European Football Associations since 1955 for the top football clubs in Europe. It...

 championships.

A Spanish international
Spain national football team
The Spain national football team represents Spain in international association football and is controlled by the Royal Spanish Football Federation, the governing body for football in Spain. The current head coach is Vicente del Bosque...

 on nearly 100 occasions, Puyol was part of the squads that won the Euro 2008 and the 2010 World Cup
2010 FIFA World Cup
The 2010 FIFA World Cup was the 19th FIFA World Cup, the world championship for men's national association football teams. It took place in South Africa from 11 June to 11 July 2010...

 tournaments.

Club career


Born in La Pobla de Segur
La Pobla de Segur
La Pobla de Segur is a town and municipality located in the comarca of Pallars Jussà, province of Lleida, Catalonia, in northern Spain. According to the 2009 census , the town has a population of 3,237 inhabitants. It is situated at the confluence of the Flamicell and Noguera Pallaresa rivers in...

, Lleida, Catalonia
Catalonia
Catalonia is an autonomous community in northeastern Spain, with the official status of a "nationality" of Spain. Catalonia comprises four provinces: Barcelona, Girona, Lleida, and Tarragona. Its capital and largest city is Barcelona. Catalonia covers an area of 32,114 km² and has an...

, Puyol started playing football for his hometown club, as a goalkeeper. However, after injury problems with his shoulder, he switched to striker. He said that in his youth, "My parents were skeptical about me becoming a footballer and encouraged me to study." In 1995, he joined FC Barcelona
FC Barcelona
Futbol Club Barcelona , also known as Barcelona and familiarly as Barça, is a professional football club, based in Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain....

's youth system at La Masia
La Masia
La Masia de Can Planes, usually shortened to La Masia, , is the name given to FC Barcelona's training facilities located near the Camp Nou in the Les Corts district of Barcelona, and is often used to generically describe the youth academy of Barcelona....

, switching positions again, to play as a defensive midfielder; two years later, he started playing for the club's B-team
FC Barcelona B
Futbol Club Barcelona B is a Spanish football team. They are the reserve team of FC Barcelona. Reserve teams in the Spanish football league system play in the same football pyramid as their senior team rather than a separate league. However reserve teams cannot play in the same division as their...

, occupying the position of right back.

In 1999, then-coach Louis van Gaal
Louis van Gaal
Aloysius Paulus Maria "Louis" van Gaal OON is a Dutch football manager formerly in charge of Ajax, Netherlands, Barcelona, AZ and Bayern Munich...

 promoted Puyol to the first team. He made his La Liga
La Liga
The Primera División of the Liga Nacional de Fútbol Profesional , commonly known as La Liga or, for sponsorship reasons, Liga BBVA since 2008, is the top professional association football division of the Spanish football league system...

 debut on 2 October at Real Valladolid
Real Valladolid
Real Valladolid Club de Fútbol, S.A.D. is a Spanish football club based in Valladolid, in the autonomous community of Castile and León, from where the nickname Pucela is derived....

, in a 2–0 win. After that, he successfully made another conversion, now to central defender. During the 2003 off-season, as Barcelona was immersed in a financial crisis, Manchester United
Manchester United F.C.
Manchester United Football Club is an English professional football club, based in Old Trafford, Greater Manchester, that plays in the Premier League. Founded as Newton Heath LYR Football Club in 1878, the club changed its name to Manchester United in 1902 and moved to Old Trafford in 1910.The 1958...

 showed interest in acquiring Puyol's services, but no move ever materialized; two years later, the player extended his contract for a further five seasons.

Puyol was named club captain at the end of the 2003–04 season, after the retirement of Luis Enrique
Luís Enrique Martínez García
Luis Enrique Martínez García , known as Luis Enrique, is a retired Spanish footballer, and the current head coach of Serie A club A.S. Roma...

. He continued to be a defensive cornerstone for Barça, being awarded the "Best European right back" award by UEFA
UEFA
The Union of European Football Associations , almost always referred to by its acronym UEFA is the administrative and controlling body for European association football, futsal and beach soccer....

 in 2002 (amongst other individual accolades), and helping the Catalans win two consecutive league titles. In 2005–06
2005–06 La Liga
* Athletic Bilbao* Atlético Madrid* FC Barcelona* Betis* Cádiz CF* Celta de Vigo* Deportivo Alaves* Deportivo de La Coruña* Espanyol* Getafe CF* Málaga CF* RCD Mallorca* CA Osasuna* Racing de Santander* Real Madrid* Real Sociedad* Sevilla FC...

, he appeared in a total of 52 official games, including 12 in the season's UEFA Champions League
UEFA Champions League
The UEFA Champions League, known simply the Champions League and originally known as the European Champion Clubs' Cup or European Cup, is an annual international club football competition organised by the Union of European Football Associations since 1955 for the top football clubs in Europe. It...

, which ended in conquest against Arsenal
Arsenal F.C.
Arsenal Football Club is a professional English Premier League football club based in North London. One of the most successful clubs in English football, it has won 13 First Division and Premier League titles and 10 FA Cups...

, the club's second.

On 16 September 2008, Puyol made his 400th appearance in all competitions for Barcelona's first team in a Champions League match against Sporting Clube de Portugal. In the league season, he dealt with injury problems, but still contributed to the team by appearing in 28 matches and helped to win another league title, his only goal coming in El Clásico
El Clásico
El Clásico , also known as El derbi Español, is the name given in football to a match between Real Madrid and Barcelona. It is contested twice a year in the Spanish La Liga competition, and more often if the clubs meet in other competitions...

at Real Madrid
Real Madrid C.F.
Real Madrid Club de Fútbol , commonly known as Real Madrid, is a professional football club based in Madrid, Spain. The club have won a record 31 La Liga titles, the Primera División of the Liga de Fútbol Profesional , 18 Copas del Rey, 8 Spanish Super Cups, 1 Copa Eva Duarte and 1 Copa de la...

 on 2 May 2009, which finished with a resounding 6–2 away win; from 2008–10 combined, other than the two league titles, he was essential in conquering the 2009 UEFA Super Cup
2009 UEFA Super Cup
The 2009 UEFA Super Cup was the 34th UEFA Super Cup, an annual football match between the winners of the previous season's UEFA Champions League and UEFA Cup competitions...

, the 2009 Champions League
2009 UEFA Champions League Final
The 2009 UEFA Champions League Final was played on 27 May 2009 at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome, Italy. The match determined the winners of the 2008–09 season of the UEFA Champions League, a tournament for the top football clubs in Europe. The match was won by Barcelona of Spain, who beat England's...

 and the 2009 FIFA Club World Cup
2009 FIFA Club World Cup
-Play-off for Quarter-finals:-Quarter-finals:-----Semi-finals:-----Match for fifth place:-Match for third place:-Final:-Scorers:4 goals Denilson...

, appearing in nearly 100 official matches, and describing the club as "the team who every Catalan child wants to play for... I am living the dream playing football for Barça and it is my dream to retire playing here."

Puyol struggled again with injury in the 2010–11 season
2010–11 La Liga
The 2010–11 La Liga season was the 80th since its establishment. The campaign began on 28 August 2010 and ended on 21 May 2011. A total of 20 teams contested the league, 17 of which already contested in the 2009–10 season and three of which were promoted from the Segunda División...

, but still appeared in 28 official games for Barcelona, which again won the league and the Champions League. He played five minutes in the final
2011 UEFA Champions League Final
The 2011 UEFA Champions League Final was a football match played on 28 May 2011 at Wembley Stadium in London that decided the winner of the 2010–11 season of the UEFA Champions League. The winners received the European Champion Clubs' Cup...

 of the latter competition, a 3–1 win against Manchester United.

International career



Puyol won his first cap
Cap (sport)
In sports, a cap is a metaphorical term for a player's appearance on a select team, such as a national team. The term dates from the practice in the United Kingdom of awarding a cap to every player in an international match of association football...

 for Spain
Spain national football team
The Spain national football team represents Spain in international association football and is controlled by the Royal Spanish Football Federation, the governing body for football in Spain. The current head coach is Vicente del Bosque...

 on 15 November 2000 against the Netherlands
Netherlands national football team
The Netherlands National Football Team represents the Netherlands in association football and is controlled by the Royal Dutch Football Association , the governing body for football in the Netherlands...

, and remained a regular fixture in the following years. He played for the nation at the 2000 Olympics
Football at the 2000 Summer Olympics
The football tournament at the 2000 Summer Olympics was the 20th official Olympic football tournament. A women's tournament was held for the second time.-Medal winners:-Venues:*Olympic Stadium, Sydney*Sydney Football Stadium, Sydney*Bruce Stadium, Canberra...

, 2002 FIFA World Cup
2002 FIFA World Cup
The 2002 FIFA World Cup was the 17th staging of the FIFA World Cup, held in South Korea and Japan from 31 May to 30 June. It was also the first World Cup held in Asia, and the last in which the golden goal rule was implemented. Brazil won the tournament for a record fifth time, beating Germany 2–0...

, UEFA Euro 2004, 2006 World Cup
2006 FIFA World Cup
The 2006 FIFA World Cup was the 18th FIFA World Cup, the quadrennial international football world championship tournament. It was held from 9 June to 9 July 2006 in Germany, which won the right to host the event in July 2000. Teams representing 198 national football associations from all six...

, Euro 2008, 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup
2009 FIFA Confederations Cup
The 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup was the eighth Confederations Cup, and was held in South Africa from 14 June to 28 June 2009 as a prelude to the 2010 FIFA World Cup. The draw was held on 22 November 2008 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg. The opening match was played at Ellis Park...

 and the 2010 World Cup
2010 FIFA World Cup
The 2010 FIFA World Cup was the 19th FIFA World Cup, the world championship for men's national association football teams. It took place in South Africa from 11 June to 11 July 2010...

.

At Euro 2008, Puyol started throughout the vast majority of the competition, as the defensive backline only conceded two goals in five games, with an eventual final win against Germany
Germany national football team
The Germany national football team is the football team that has represented Germany in international competition since 1908. It is governed by the German Football Association , which was founded in 1900....

. He was named in the Team of the Tournament alongside defensive partner Carlos Marchena
Carlos Marchena
Carlos Marchena López is a Spanish footballer who plays for Villarreal CF and the Spanish national team.Mainly a central defender with an aggressive approach, he can also pitch in as a defensive midfielder...

, of Valencia CF
Valencia CF
Valencia Club de Fútbol is a Spanish football club based in Valencia, Spain. They play in La Liga and are one of the most successful and biggest clubs in Spanish Football and European Football. Valencia have won six La Liga titles, seven Copa del Rey trophies, two Fairs Cups which was the...

. He started in three out of five at the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup
2009 FIFA Confederations Cup
The 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup was the eighth Confederations Cup, and was held in South Africa from 14 June to 28 June 2009 as a prelude to the 2010 FIFA World Cup. The draw was held on 22 November 2008 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg. The opening match was played at Ellis Park...

, and captained the team when Iker Casillas
Íker Casillas
Iker Casillas Fernández is a Spanish football goalkeeper who plays for the Spanish La Liga club Real Madrid and the Spanish national team, being the captain of both...

 was rested for the last group stage match; as Spain finished third, he and four other teammates were named in the Team of the Tournament.

At the 2010 World Cup in South Africa
South Africa
The Republic of South Africa is a country in southern Africa. Located at the southern tip of Africa, it is divided into nine provinces, with of coastline on the Atlantic and Indian oceans...

, Puyol started every match and played almost every minute (he was substituted by Marchena in the 84th minute of the quarter-final against Paraguay
Paraguay national football team
The Paraguay national football team is controlled by the Paraguayan Football Association and represents Paraguay in men's international football competitions. The team has reached the second round of the World Cup on four occasions . The 2010 trip also featured their first appearance in the...

). He scored the only goal in the semifinal against Germany with a powerful header from a corner
Corner kick
A corner kick is a method of restarting play in a game of association football. It was first devised in Sheffield under the Sheffield Rules 1867...

 taken by Barcelona teammate Xavi
Xavi
Xavier Hernández i Creus , commonly known as Xavi Hernández or simply Xavi , is a Spanish footballer who plays as a central midfielder for La Liga club FC Barcelona, where he has spent his entire 14-year career....

, sending the national team through to their first World Cup
FIFA World Cup
The FIFA World Cup, often simply the World Cup, is an international association football competition contested by the senior men's national teams of the members of Fédération Internationale de Football Association , the sport's global governing body...

 final
2010 FIFA World Cup Final
The 2010 FIFA World Cup Final was a football match that took place on 11 July 2010 at Soccer City in Johannesburg, South Africa, to determine the winner of the 2010 FIFA World Cup. Spain defeated the Netherlands 1–0 with a goal from Andrés Iniesta four minutes from the end of extra time...

, and scoring his third international goal in 89 matches; in the final, he played the full 120 minutes, as Spain defeated the Netherlands 1–0.

On 1 August 2010, 32-year Puyol announced that he would continue to play for the national team for at least another two years.

Playing style


Puyol is known for his intense commitment and ruggedness as a defender. According to Barcelona's head doctor, Puyol is "the strongest, who has the quickest reactions, and who has the most explosive strength." Club fans refer to him as "The Wall". Miguel Ángel Nadal
Miguel Ángel Nadal
Miguel Ángel Nadal Homar is a retired Spanish footballer and current coach.Nicknamed The Beast, Nadal based his game in a tremendous physical display, also being adaptable to various defender and midfielder positions....

, who played with him for a short period of time, said, "Carles plays with maturity, has great positional sense, and above all, has pride in his shirt ."

Puyol is also known for his leadership and work ethic. He often continues training alone after the end of a team practice session or on days off. He said in 2010, "I don't have Romário
Romário
Romário de Souza Faria , better known simply as Romário , is a former footballer who played striker,manager and current politician where is currently running for a mayor like position in his hometown...

's technique, [Marc] Overmars
Marc Overmars
Marc Overmars is a retired Dutch footballer. He is best known as a right-footed left winger, although he is able to use both his feet with equal precision and power...

' pace or [Patrick] Kluivert
Patrick Kluivert
Patrick Stephan Kluivert is a former Dutch footballer, currently head coach of the youth side of FC Twente. He played as a striker for AFC Ajax, A.C. Milan, FC Barcelona, Newcastle United, Valencia CF, PSV Eindhoven, and Lille OSC. Kluivert played for the Dutch national team from 1994 to 2004. He...

's strength. But I work harder than the others. I'm like the student who is not as clever, but revises for his exams and does OK in the end." He is often described as the heart of the Barcelona team.

Fellow defender Gerard Piqué
Gerard Piqué
Gerard Piqué i Bernabeu is a Spanish footballer, currently playing as a central defender for FC Barcelona.A product of Barça's cantera, he initially left the club for Manchester United in 2004, where he remained for four years, before returning to Barça under Josep Guardiola's leadership, helping...

 said: "He's someone who, even if you're winning 3–0 and there's a few seconds left in the game will shout at the top of his voice at you if he thinks your concentration is going." A former team-mate said, "Even four goals down he thinks we can still win", and another described him as "a pain in the arse" but added "that's exactly what we need".

He's also skilled in tackles and extremely efficient in man-marking. Despite possessing average height, his great physical strength allows him to jump higher than most footballers, which makes him very good in aerial play, both in offense and defense.

Personal life


In 2006, Puyol said that when not working, he leads "a very quiet life... I've not been to a nightclub in Barcelona
Barcelona
Barcelona is the second largest city in Spain after Madrid, and the capital of Catalonia, with a population of 1,621,537 within its administrative limits on a land area of...

 for years either. When I go out, I stay in a restaurant with my friends." He practices yoga
Yoga
Yoga is a physical, mental, and spiritual discipline, originating in ancient India. The goal of yoga, or of the person practicing yoga, is the attainment of a state of perfect spiritual insight and tranquility while meditating on Supersoul...

 and Pilates
Pilates
Pilates is a physical fitness system developed in the early 20th century by Joseph Pilates in Germany, the UK and the USA. As of 2005, there were 11 million people practicing the discipline regularly and 14,000 instructors in the United States....

, and according to a friend, Thubten Wangchen, is highly interested in Tibetan Buddhism
Tibetan Buddhism
Tibetan Buddhism is the body of Buddhist religious doctrine and institutions characteristic of Tibet and certain regions of the Himalayas, including northern Nepal, Bhutan, and India . It is the state religion of Bhutan...

 and culture. Puyol met the Dalai Lama
Dalai Lama
The Dalai Lama is a high lama in the Gelug or "Yellow Hat" branch of Tibetan Buddhism. The name is a combination of the Mongolian word далай meaning "Ocean" and the Tibetan word bla-ma meaning "teacher"...

 in 2007.

Puyol's father, Josep, died in a farming accident in late 2006 while Carles was on his way to play a match against Deportivo de La Coruña
Deportivo de La Coruña
Real Club Deportivo de La Coruña is a professional football club based in the city of A Coruña, Galicia; founded in 1906 and currently playing in Segunda División...

. He was informed of the news by coach Frank Rijkaard
Frank Rijkaard
Franklin Edmundo Rijkaard is a Dutch football manager of Dutch and Surinamese descent and former player. Rijkaard has played for Ajax, Real Zaragoza and Milan, and represented his national side 73 times, scoring 10 goals. In his coaching career, he has been at the helm of the Dutch national side,...

 upon landing. He said that this, combined with an injury led to a dark period, with Spanish national team physio Raúl Martínez eventually coming to Barcelona: in the player's words, he "...gave me a great telling off. He made me react, and I began to try to be more cheerful, and not overwhelmed by it all."

Puyol's long shaggy hair has been a distinctive feature throughout his career. Barcelona manager van Gaal, suggested he get it cut when the player was 19, immediately after his first training session with the senior players: "What's your problem, can't you afford the money for a haircut?", Van Gaal asked him in his office. "I said nothing," Puyol remembered, "and to this day have kept my hair as it is". He likes to warm up for games listening to Napalm Death
Napalm Death
Napalm Death are a death metal band formed in Birmingham, England in 1981. While none of its original members remain in the group, the lineup of vocalist Mark "Barney" Greenway, bassist Shane Embury, guitarist Mitch Harris and drummer Danny Herrera has remained consistent for most of the band's ...

.

In March 2009, Puyol told Goal.com
Goal.com
Goal.com, founded in 2004 by Chicco Merighi and former Ferrari Maserati and Ralph Lauren President and CEO Gian Luigi Longinotti-Buitoni, is a website for international football news. Goal.com represents the largest football community in the world, with 22 language versions, covering over 200...

: "I do not like to go out much, although it is good to disconnect and I like to read." In September of the following year, he started a relationship with model
Model (person)
A model , sometimes called a mannequin, is a person who is employed to display, advertise and promote commercial products or to serve as a subject of works of art....

 Malena Costa. On 16 October, he scored through a header in a 2–1 home win against Valencia CF
Valencia CF
Valencia Club de Fútbol is a Spanish football club based in Valencia, Spain. They play in La Liga and are one of the most successful and biggest clubs in Spanish Football and European Football. Valencia have won six La Liga titles, seven Copa del Rey trophies, two Fairs Cups which was the...

, and dedicated her the goal by making a heart symbol with both hands. “I dedicate the goal to my girlfriend”, he said after the game.

Club


Club Season League Cup Europe
UEFA
The Union of European Football Associations , almost always referred to by its acronym UEFA is the administrative and controlling body for European association football, futsal and beach soccer....

Other Total
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Barcelona B
FC Barcelona B
Futbol Club Barcelona B is a Spanish football team. They are the reserve team of FC Barcelona. Reserve teams in the Spanish football league system play in the same football pyramid as their senior team rather than a separate league. However reserve teams cannot play in the same division as their...

1996–97 1 1 1 1
1997–98 42 3 42 3
1998–99 38 2 38 2
1999–00 8 0 8 0
Total 896Barcelona
FC Barcelona
Futbol Club Barcelona , also known as Barcelona and familiarly as Barça, is a professional football club, based in Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain....

1999–00
1999–2000 FC Barcelona season
-Squad:...

24 0 5 0 8 0 0 0 37 0
2000–01 17 0 2 0 5 0 24 0
2001–02 35 2 1 0 15 0 51 2
2002–03 32 0 0 0 14 0 46 0
2003–04 27 0 4 0 7 0 38 0
2004–05 36 0 1 0 8 0 45 0
2005–06 35 1 3 0 12 0 2 0 52 1
2006–07 35 1 7 0 8 1 5 0 55 2
2007–08 30 0 7 0 10 1 47 1
2008–09 28 1 6 0 11 0 45 1
2009–10 32 1 2 0 9 0 5 0 48 1
2010–11
2010–11 FC Barcelona season
The 2010–11 season is Futbol Club Barcelona's 117th in existence and the club's 79th consecutive season in the top flight of Spanish football...

17 1 2 0 8 0 0 0 27 1
2011–12
2011–12 FC Barcelona season
The 2011–12 season is Futbol Club Barcelona's 112th in existence and the club's 81st consecutive season in the top flight of Spanish football. Barcelona will be debuting their new and first paid shirt sponsor Qatar Foundation after an agreement was reached in 2010 with the non-profit organization...

5 1 1 0 4 0 0 0 10 1
Total 3538410119212052510
Career totals 44214410119212061416

International



|2000||1||0
|-
|2001||4||0
|-
|2002||10||1
|-
|2003||8||0
|-
|2004||10||0
|-
|2005||10||0
|-
|2006||10||0
|-
|2007||5||0
|-
|2008||14||1
|-
|2009||8||0
|-
|2010||11||1
|-
|2011||1||0
|-
!Total||96||3
|}

International goals



|-
| 1. || 17 April 2002 || Windsor Park
Windsor Park
Windsor Park is a football stadium in Belfast, Northern Ireland and the home ground of Linfield F.C. and the Northern Ireland national football team. It is also where the Irish Cup and Irish League Cup finals are played.-History:...

, Belfast
Belfast
Belfast is the capital of and largest city in Northern Ireland. By population, it is the 14th biggest city in the United Kingdom and second biggest on the island of Ireland . It is the seat of the devolved government and legislative Northern Ireland Assembly...

, Northern Ireland || || 4–0 || 5–0 || Friendly
|-
| 2. || 11 October 2008 || A. Le Coq Arena
A. Le Coq Arena
A. Le Coq Arena is a football stadium in Tallinn, Estonia. As well as football matches, it also hosts various concerts and events. According to the plan, the stadium is unfinished....

, Tallinn
Tallinn
Tallinn is the capital and largest city of Estonia. It occupies an area of with a population of 414,940. It is situated on the northern coast of the country, on the banks of the Gulf of Finland, south of Helsinki, east of Stockholm and west of Saint Petersburg. Tallinn's Old Town is in the list...

, Estonia || || 0–3 || 0–3 || 2010 FIFA World Cup qualification
2010 FIFA World Cup qualification (UEFA)
The European zone of qualification for the 2010 FIFA World Cup saw 53 teams competing for 13 places at the finals. The qualification process started on 20 August 2008, after UEFA Euro 2008, and ended on 18 November 2009. The qualification process saw the first competitive matches of...


|-
| 3. || 7 July 2010 || Moses Mabhida Stadium, Durban
Durban
Durban is the largest city in the South African province of KwaZulu-Natal and the third largest city in South Africa. It forms part of the eThekwini metropolitan municipality. Durban is famous for being the busiest port in South Africa. It is also seen as one of the major centres of tourism...

, South Africa || || 1–0 || 1–0 || 2010 FIFA World Cup
2010 FIFA World Cup
The 2010 FIFA World Cup was the 19th FIFA World Cup, the world championship for men's national association football teams. It took place in South Africa from 11 June to 11 July 2010...


|}

Barcelona

  • Spanish League
    La Liga
    The Primera División of the Liga Nacional de Fútbol Profesional , commonly known as La Liga or, for sponsorship reasons, Liga BBVA since 2008, is the top professional association football division of the Spanish football league system...

    : 2004–05
    2004–05 La Liga
    2004–05 season was composed of the following clubs:* Albacete Balompié* Athletic Bilbao* Atlético Madrid* FC Barcelona* Real Betis* Deportivo de La Coruña* Espanyol* Getafe CF* Levante UD* Málaga CF* Real Mallorca* CD Numancia* CA Osasuna...

    , 2005–06
    2005–06 La Liga
    * Athletic Bilbao* Atlético Madrid* FC Barcelona* Betis* Cádiz CF* Celta de Vigo* Deportivo Alaves* Deportivo de La Coruña* Espanyol* Getafe CF* Málaga CF* RCD Mallorca* CA Osasuna* Racing de Santander* Real Madrid* Real Sociedad* Sevilla FC...

    , 2008–09, 2009–10
    2009–10 La Liga
    - Personnel and sponsoring :- Before the start of the season :- During the season :-League table:||rowspan=1 style="background-color:#F9F9F9;"|||rowspan=1 style="background-color:#F9F9F9;"|...

    , 2010–11
    2010–11 La Liga
    The 2010–11 La Liga season was the 80th since its establishment. The campaign began on 28 August 2010 and ended on 21 May 2011. A total of 20 teams contested the league, 17 of which already contested in the 2009–10 season and three of which were promoted from the Segunda División...

  • Spanish Cup
    Copa del Rey
    The Copa del Rey is an annual football cup competition for Spanish football teams. Its full name is Campeonato de España – Copa de Su Majestad el Rey de Fútbol ....

    : 2008–09; Runner-up 2010–11
    2010–11 Copa del Rey
    The 2010–11 Copa del Rey was the 107th staging of the Copa del Rey. The competition began on August 21, 2010 and ended on April 20, 2011 with the final, held at the Estadio Mestalla in Valencia, in which Real Madrid lifted the trophy for the eighteenth time in their history with a 1–0 victory over...

  • Spanish Supercup
    Supercopa de España
    The Supercopa de España is a Spanish football championship contested by the winners of La Liga and the Copa del Rey...

    : 2005
    2005 Supercopa de España
    The 2005 Supercopa de España was a two-leg Spanish football match played on 13 and 20 August 2005.It contested by league champions FC Barcelona and cup-winners Real Betis. FC Barcelona won 4–2 on aggregate.-First leg:-Second leg:-References:...

    , 2006
    2006 Supercopa de España
    The 2006 Supercopa de España was a two-leg Spanish football match played on 17 and 20 August 2006.It was contested by league champions FC Barcelona and cup-winners RCD Espanyol . FC Barcelona won 4–0 on aggregate.-First leg:...

    , 2009
    2009 Supercopa de España
    The 2009 Supercopa de España was two-legged Spanish football match-up played on 16 August and 23 August 2009. It was contested by Athletic Bilbao, the 2008–09 Copa del Rey runners-up, and FC Barcelona, the 2008–09 Primera División Winners....

    , 2010
    2010 Supercopa de España
    The 2010 Supercopa de España was a two-legged Spanish football match-up played on 14 August and 21 August 2010. It was contested by Sevilla, the 2009–10 Copa del Rey winners, and Barcelona, the 2009–10 Primera División winners....

    , 2011
    2011 Supercopa de España
    The 2011 Supercopa de España was a two-legged Spanish football match-up that was played on 14 and 17 August 2011. It was contested by Real Madrid, the 2010–11 Copa del Rey winners, and Barcelona, the 2010–11 La Liga winners....

  • UEFA Champions League
    UEFA Champions League
    The UEFA Champions League, known simply the Champions League and originally known as the European Champion Clubs' Cup or European Cup, is an annual international club football competition organised by the Union of European Football Associations since 1955 for the top football clubs in Europe. It...

    : 2005–06, 2008–09, 2010–11
  • UEFA Super Cup: 2009
    2009 UEFA Super Cup
    The 2009 UEFA Super Cup was the 34th UEFA Super Cup, an annual football match between the winners of the previous season's UEFA Champions League and UEFA Cup competitions...

    , 2011
    2009 UEFA Super Cup
    The 2009 UEFA Super Cup was the 34th UEFA Super Cup, an annual football match between the winners of the previous season's UEFA Champions League and UEFA Cup competitions...

  • FIFA Club World Cup
    FIFA Club World Cup
    The FIFA Club World Cup is a football competition between the champion clubs from all six continental confederations.The first FIFA Club World Championship took place in Brazil in January 2000...

    : 2009
    2009 FIFA Club World Cup
    -Play-off for Quarter-finals:-Quarter-finals:-----Semi-finals:-----Match for fifth place:-Match for third place:-Final:-Scorers:4 goals Denilson...


Country

  • FIFA World Cup
    FIFA World Cup
    The FIFA World Cup, often simply the World Cup, is an international association football competition contested by the senior men's national teams of the members of Fédération Internationale de Football Association , the sport's global governing body...

    : 2010
    2010 FIFA World Cup
    The 2010 FIFA World Cup was the 19th FIFA World Cup, the world championship for men's national association football teams. It took place in South Africa from 11 June to 11 July 2010...

  • UEFA European Football Championship
    UEFA European Football Championship
    The UEFA European Football Championship is the main football competition of the men's national football teams governed by UEFA . Held every four years since 1960, in the even-numbered year between World Cup tournaments, it was originally called the UEFA European Nations Cup, changing to the current...

    : 2008
  • Summer Olympics
    Summer Olympic Games
    The Summer Olympic Games or the Games of the Olympiad are an international multi-sport event, occurring every four years, organized by the International Olympic Committee. Medals are awarded in each event, with gold medals for first place, silver for second and bronze for third, a tradition that...

    : Silver medal
    Silver medal
    A silver medal is a medal awarded to the second place finisher of contests such as the Olympic Games, Commonwealth Games, and contests with similar formats....

     2000
    Football at the 2000 Summer Olympics
    The football tournament at the 2000 Summer Olympics was the 20th official Olympic football tournament. A women's tournament was held for the second time.-Medal winners:-Venues:*Olympic Stadium, Sydney*Sydney Football Stadium, Sydney*Bruce Stadium, Canberra...

  • FIFA Confederations Cup
    FIFA Confederations Cup
    The FIFA Confederations Cup is an association football tournament for national teams, currently held every four years by FIFA. It is contested by the winners of each of the six FIFA confederation championships , along with the FIFA World Cup winner and the host nation, to bring the number of teams...

    : Third-place 2009
    2009 FIFA Confederations Cup
    The 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup was the eighth Confederations Cup, and was held in South Africa from 14 June to 28 June 2009 as a prelude to the 2010 FIFA World Cup. The draw was held on 22 November 2008 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg. The opening match was played at Ellis Park...


Individual

  • Don Balón Award
    Don Balón Award
    From 1976 until 2010, the Spanish magazine Don Balón confered the Don Balón Award to the best Spanish player, the best foreign player, the best referee, and the breakthrough player in La Liga...

     – Breakthrough player of the year: 2001
  • Best European Defender: 2004, 2005, 2009
  • Best FIFA Defender: 2005, 2007
  • ESM Team of the Year
    European Sports Magazines
    European Sports Magazines is a European association of football related publications.-ESM Members:The members of this group elect each month a European "Team of the Month", and annually a European "Team of the Year"....

    : 2001–02, 2010
  • UEFA Club Best Defender
    UEFA Club Football Awards
    The UEFA Club Football Awards are awards given by UEFA to the most outstanding performers of the European club football season. The awards were presented in August each year at a special gala in Monaco ahead of the UEFA Super Cup. Since 2005, the awards are presented at the UEFA Champions League draw...

    : 2006
  • FIFPro World XI
    FIFPro
    The Fédération Internationale des Associations de Footballeurs Professionnels , usually known by the abbreviation FIFPro, is a worldwide representative organization for professional football players. At the moment there are 43 national players associations who are members of FIFPro...

    : 2007, 2008, 2010
  • UEFA Euro 2008 Team of the Tournament
  • FIFA Team of the Year
    FIFA
    The Fédération Internationale de Football Association , commonly known by the acronym FIFA , is the international governing body of :association football, futsal and beach football. Its headquarters are located in Zurich, Switzerland, and its president is Sepp Blatter, who is in his fourth...

    : 2008, 2009, 2010
  • 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup Team of the Tournament
  • FIFA World Cup All-Star Team: 2010
    2010 FIFA World Cup
    The 2010 FIFA World Cup was the 19th FIFA World Cup, the world championship for men's national association football teams. It took place in South Africa from 11 June to 11 July 2010...

  • Prince of Asturias Awards
    Prince of Asturias Awards
    The Prince of Asturias Awards are a series of annual prizes awarded in Spain by the Prince of Asturias Foundation to individuals, entities or organizations from around the world who make notable achievements in the sciences, humanities, and public affairs....

    : 2010

External links