▶️ Listen to the latest 'The Barcelona Podcast' now:

Carles Puyol, FC Barcelona's Eternal Captain, Deserves A Statue At The Nou Camp >> Read My Mind


Carles Puyol, who is celebrating his 34th birthday, continues to be Barça's leader on and off the pitch after having performed at the highest level in professional football since 1999. His charisma, strength and powerful mindset continues to allow him to overcame any adversities on his way to achieve legendary status.

FC Barcelona’s El Capitano has a lot to celebrate as he completes another year with Barça’s first team. For Guardiola, Puyol is the centerpiece of the team’s defence, in the last 7 matches he’s figured in the starting line-up 6 times; of the last 30, he’s led the team 24 times.

It’s worth noting that Puyol has played the second most matches in Club history (552), the only player to have played more official matches for FC Barcelona is his teammate Xavi Hernández (621). In fact, Puyol reached this mark recently. It was when he played in the Champions League quarterfinal against Milan (3-1).

Despite his age, this has been a fantastic season for the Catalan captain. While proving to be dependable on defence, the player has also shown to be dangerous on offence as well. In fact, Puyol has set a new personal record this year: he’s scored four goals this season - two in the Liga and two in the Cup - besting his personal tally set in the 2001/02 and 2006/07 seasons, where he scored two goals.

- As a born Barça fan, I remember when Louis Van Gaal (also know as The Dutch Brick-Head) promoted a young, caveman-looking youngster to the first team. Puyol's defensive skills were so obvious that, despite having entered La Masia in 1995 as a midfielder, was given his Barça debut as a right back instead.

Puyol's impact in the team was impressive from very early on, becoming many Culés' favourite thanks to his incredible courage, determination and love for the Blaugrana and Catalan colours. To be honest, Carles was, together with Xavi, the only long-term positives FC Barcelona took from Van Gaal's disastrous Dark Ages.

Having performed to such a high standard for years, young Puyol became captain in 2004. You can actually tell that Carles took the Catalan armband from Luis Enrique, as both Barça legends share a similar aggressive, no non-sense approach to football but are respectful to rivals and teammates alike.


Speaking after he struggled with injuries for most of 2011, Puyol explained: ' These were eight months of suffering. I had a hard time because I could not see a solution. I experienced loss of strength in my leg and I could not play. I even thought about quitting football' 

To hear Puyol even mention the word 'retirement' makes me realise how fortunate we are for having a footballer with such charisma, dedication and love for the Blaugrana colours. A piece of every Cule's heart will drop when he finally hangs his boots.

The impact Puyol has had on Barca is such that I honestly can't imagine our team without him. Don't get me wrong, I know Mascherano has been excellent this season, as was Abidal before his unfortunate need for a liver transplant. I also feel that, without weird external distractions, Pique has the skills to be a great central defender but, let's be honest, Puyol's boots will be impossible to fill after he retires.


Carles Puyol is much more than a briiliant football player. He's an approachable, strong-minded individual who leads by example. In over 17 seasons at Barca, not once has he mouthed a bad word about his teammates, coaches or even rivals. His ultra-professional attitude has earned him recognition and respect around the world, to the point even Madridistas acknowledge his greatness.

In a recent poll in our Barçablog Facebook page, a massive 87% of fans voted Carles Puyol as Barça's best ever defender. When that many people agree, you know you've found the right answer.

One point is clear: Football fans around the world, not just Culés, will forever admire the strong Catalan caveman who built Barça into the most powerful team in football history.

CARLES PUYOL: FC BARCELONA'S LEGENDARY CAPTAIN IS STRONGER THAN EVER!!!!

Posted by: Tom , Columnist at 'Read My Mind'