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Barcelona’s La Masia Academy: Top 10 Players who made history

Barcelona’s La Masia Academy: Top 10 Players Who Made History

FC Barcelona's academy is more than just a talent factory—it symbolizes footballing excellence. Here, we celebrate the Top 10 players who have risen through its ranks to make history.

10. Gavi

Gavi, an emerging star making waves in the Barcelona midfield, is at the tail end of this esteemed list. Though his career is still nascent, Gavi's soccer IQ defies his age. His precise passing, industriousness, and seamless ball control offer a glimpse into an auspicious future.

Trophies at Barcelona (so far)

  • Barca: La Liga: 2022–23, Supercop de Espana 2022-23
  • Individual: Kopa Trophy: 2022, Golden Boy: 2022

9.

The teenage phenomenon Pedri has captivated the Nou Camp with his dribbling finesse and playmaking vision. Almost like a calm and composed combination of Iniesta and in dribbling and vision, Pedri has quickly ascended as one of Barcelona's indispensable talents.

Trophies at Barcelona (so far)

  • Barca: La Liga: 2022–23, Supercop de Espana 2022-23, 2020-21
  • Individual: Kopa Trophy: 2021, Golden Boy: 2021

8. Pedro

Perhaps somewhat overshadowed by the newer generation, Pedro's contributions to Barcelona during his tenure were invaluable. With his knack for clutch performances in critical matches, Pedro's name is etched in both La Liga and Champions League lore.

Trophies at Barcelona

  • Barca: La Liga: 2008–09, 2009–10, 2010–11, 2012–13, 2014–15 | Copa del Rey: 2008–09, 2011–12, 2014–15 | Supercopa de : 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013 | UEFA Champions League: 2008–09, 2010–11, 2014–15 | UEFA Super Cup: 2009, 2011, 2015
  • Individual: La Liga's Breakthrough Player: 2009–10

7. Gerard Piqué

A stalwart in defense, Gerard Piqué's legacy is characterized by robust tackles and a knack for scoring crucial goals. His partnership with Carles Puyol formed one of the most formidable defensive duos the sport has ever seen.

Trophies at Barcelona

  • Barcelona: La Liga: 2008–09, 2009–10, 2010–11, 2012–13, 2014–15, 2015–16, 2017–18, 2018–19 | Copa del Rey: 2008–09, 2011–12, 2014–15, 2015–16, 2016–17, 2017–18 | Supercopa de España: 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2016, 2018 | UEFA Champions League: 2008–09, 2010–11, 2014–15 | UEFA Super Cup: 2009, 2011, 2015
  • Individual: La Liga Breakthrough Player of the Year: 2008–09 | La Liga Best Defender: 2009–10 | La Liga Team of the Season: 2014–15, 2015–16 | UEFA Champions League Team of the Season: 2014–15 | UEFA La Liga Team of the Season: 2016–17 | UEFA European Championship Team of the Tournament: 2012 | UEFA Team of the Year: 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015, 2016

6. Sergio Busquets

Often underappreciated but always instrumental, Sergio Busquets' genius lies in his understated brilliance. His ability to read the game and break up opponent plays has made him a cornerstone of Barcelona's midfield for over a decade.

Trophies at Barcelona

  • Barca: La Liga: 2008–09, 2009–10, 2010–11, 2012–13, 2014–15, 2015–16, 2017–18, 2018–19, 2022-23 | Copa del Rey: 2008–09, 2011–12, 2014–15, 2015–16, 2016–17, 2017–18, 2020-21 | Supercopa de España: 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2016, 2018, 2022-23 | UEFA Champions League: 2008–09, 2010–11, 2014–15 | UEFA Super Cup: 2009, 2011, 2015
  • Individual: La Liga Breakthrough Player of the Year: 2009 | La Liga Fair Play Award: 2013–14 | UEFA European Championship Team of the Tournament: 2012 | UEFA Team of the Year: 2011, 2012, 2013

5. Carles Puyol

With his lion-like mane and indomitable spirit, Carles Puyol embodied the essence of a Barcelona captain. His leadership on and off the field set a precedent for dedication and tenacity.

Trophies at Barcelona

  • Barca: La Liga: 1998–99, 2004–05, 2005–06, 2008–09, 2009–10, 2010–11 | Copa del Rey: 2008–09, 2011–12 | Supercopa de España: 2005, 2006, 2009, 2010, 2011 | UEFA Champions League: 2005–06, 2008–09, 2010–11 | UEFA Super Cup: 2009, 2011
  • Individual: UEFA Team of the Year: 2002, 2005, 2006 | La Liga's Breakthrough Player: 2001 | La Liga Best Defender: 2008 | UEFA European Championship Team of the Tournament: 2008

4. Pep Guardiola

Before becoming a legendary manager, Pep Guardiola was the lynchpin of Johan Cruyff's “Dream Team.” His vision and playmaking abilities set the template for the modern Barcelona midfielder.

Trophies at Barcelona

  • Barca: La Liga: 1990–91, 1991–92, 1992–93, 1993–94, 1997–98, 1998–99 | Copa del Rey: 1996–97 | Supercopa de España: 1991, 1992, 1994, 1996 | UEFA Champions League: 1991–92 | UEFA Cup Winners' Cup: 1996–97 | UEFA Super Cup: 1992, 1997
  • Individual: La Liga Breakthrough Player of the Season: 1990–91 | La Liga Best Spanish Player: 1992

3. Andrés Iniesta

Andrés Iniesta, a master of navigating tight spaces, was pivotal in Barcelona's golden era. His exceptional dribbling and passing helped secure multiple La Liga and Champions League titles. Alongside Xavi and Busquets, he epitomized Barca's iconic tiki-taka style.

His last-gasp goal against Chelsea in the 2009 Champions League semi-finals remains a defining moment of his career. Oh, and his late goal against the Netherlands in the 2010 World Cup final is one of the most iconic moments in football history.

Trophies at Barcelona

  • Barca: La Liga: 2004–05, 2005–06, 2008–09, 2009–10, 2010–11, 2012–13, 2014–15, 2015–16, 2017–18 | Copa del Rey: 2008–09, 2011–12, 2014–15, 2015–16, 2016–17, 2017–18 | Supercopa de España: 2005, 2006, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2016 | UEFA Champions League: 2005–06, 2008–09, 2010–11, 2014–15 | UEFA Super Cup: 2009, 2011, 2015
  • Individual: UEFA Best Player in Europe: 2012 | FIFA Ballon d'Or 3rd place: 2010, 2012 | La Liga Best Spanish Player: 2009 | La Liga Best Midfielder: 2009, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 | UEFA European Championship Player of the Tournament: 2012 | UEFA European Championship Team of the Tournament: 2008, 2012 | UEFA Team of the Year: 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015, 2016 | Golden Foot: 2014

2. Xavi Hernández

If Iniesta was the brush, Xavi was the painter. His unparalleled vision and football intelligence have made him arguably the best central midfielder the game has ever witnessed. The metronome of Barcelona's tiki-taka style, Xavi set the tempo for a generation of success.

Trophies at Barcelona

  • Barca: La Liga: 1998–99, 2004–05, 2005–06, 2008–09, 2009–10, 2010–11, 2012–13, 2014–15 | Copa del Rey: 2008–09, 2011–12, 2014–15 | Supercopa de España: 2005, 2006, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013 | UEFA Champions League: 2005–06, 2008–09, 2010–11, 2014–15 | UEFA Super Cup: 2009, 2011
  • Individual: FIFA World Player of the Year: 3rd place 2009, 2010, 2011 | UEFA Best Player in Europe: 3rd place 2011 | La Liga Best Midfielder: 2009, 2010, 2011 | UEFA European Championship Player of the Tournament: 2008 | UEFA Champions League Best Midfielder: 2008–09, 2009–10 | UEFA Team of the Year: 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 | Golden Foot: 2010

1. Lionel Messi

At the zenith stands Lionel Messi, the magnum opus of La Masia. Words often fall short of describing the genius of Messi, a seven-time Ballon d'Or winner. His unparalleled dribbling, lethal finishing, and playmaking vision have redefined the boundaries of football and the legacy of Barcelona and La Masia. 🐐

Trophies at Barcelona

  • Barca: La Liga: 2004–05, 2005–06, 2008–09, 2009–10, 2010–11, 2012–13, 2014–15, 2015–16, 2017–18, 2018–19 | Copa del Rey: 2008–09, 2011–12, 2014–15, 2015–16, 2016–17, 2017–18 | Supercopa de España: 2005, 2006, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2016, 2018 | UEFA Champions League: 2005–06, 2008–09, 2010–11, 2014–15 | UEFA Super Cup: 2009, 2011, 2015
  • Individual: Ballon d'Or: 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015, 2019, 2021, 2023? | FIFA World Player of the Year: 2009 | UEFA Best Player in Europe: 2011, 2015 | La Liga Best Player: 2008–09, 2009–10, 2010–11, 2011–12, 2012–13, 2014–15, 2017–18, 2018–19 | La Liga Best Forward: 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2015, 2016 | UEFA Champions League Top Scorer: 2008–09, 2009–10, 2010–11, 2011–12, 2014–15, 2018–19 | Golden Foot: 2013

Other notable La Masia graduates

Player NamePositionYears at La MasiaSenior Career StartNotable Clubs
Cesc FabregasMidfield1997–20032003Arsenal, Barcelona, Chelsea
Victor ValdesGoalkeeper1992–20002002Barcelona, Manchester United
Thiago AlcantaraMidfield2005–20112011Barcelona, Bayern Munich, Liverpool
Guillermo AmorMidfield1980–19881988Barcelona, Fiorentina
Jordi AlbaDefender1998–20052009Barcelona, Valencia
Sergi RobertoMidfield2006–20102010Barcelona
Bojan KrkicForward1999–20062007Barcelona, Roma, Stoke City
Ivan de la PenaMidfield1991–19941995Barcelona, Espanyol
Albert FerrerDefender1980–19881990Barcelona, Chelsea
Fernando NavarroDefender1998–20022003Sevilla, Mallorca, Barcelona
Oriol RomeuMidfield2004–20092011Chelsea, Southampton
Luis GarciaForward1988–19971999Barcelona, Liverpool
Cristian TelloForward2002–20102011Barcelona, Real Betis
Mikel ArtetaMidfield1997–20012001Real Sociedad, Everton, Arsenal
Marc MuniesaDefender2002–20092009Barcelona, Stoke City
Giovani dos SantosForward2002–20072007Tottenham, Villarreal
Adama TraoréForward2004–20132014Aston Villa, Wolves
Mauro IcardiForward2008–20112012Sampdoria, Inter Milan, Paris Saint-Germain

Photo: Twitter/LeoMessiMedia

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