With top teams such as Barcelona and Real Madrid appearing in La Liga, it is perhaps unsurprising that it is a league brimming with players with star quality, both past and present. Fans the world over watch and place bets upon the final La Liga standings every year and every fan has their own opinion when it comes to who are the greatest players of all time.
Choosing just three players is far from an easy task. What we have tried to do is ignore the form of just one season as this is only ever temporary. What makes players some of the greats is class. Class lasts an entire career. That being said, here’s a look at our top three La Liga players.
Lionel Messi – Barcelona
Messi’s time at Barcelona doesn’t just see him ranking as one of La Liga’s greatest ever players. It sees him as one of the greatest footballers of all time, period. What Messi has is a unique combination of speed, vision, and technique. There is no other footballer on the planet capable of matching these talents. He is one of the very best dribblers but is also capable of passing with precision, and of course, finding the back of the net.
Messi’s 2021 departure from Barcelona will hurt the club. That being said he will always be remembered fondly by fans. He brought a playing style that added a magical touch to the Barcelona team as well as bringing great entertainment to the league as a whole. Barcelona will struggle to find an apt replacement for what can only be described as a footballing genius.
Andres Iniesta – Barcelona
Now captain of Vissel Kobe in Japan, Iniesta spent the majority of his career playing in La Liga with Barcelona. Iniesta brought a fresh approach to football. While playing for Barcelona, he had a sense of humility and decency which is rare to see from such a talented player. Never did Iniesta get carried away with his own talents although the truth is that he had every right to.
Having broken into Barcelona’s first team back in 2004, season in season out Iniesta went on to prove why he was a vital part of one of the world’s biggest clubs. He developed greatly as a player and is widely regarded as one of the best midfielders around. As well as great success in La Liga, Iniesta enjoyed success in Europe, being famed for his stunning 2009 goal that sent his club into the Champions League final. He also enjoyed some great successes on the international stage.
Since his move to Japan in 2018, Iniesta has gone on to experience success. His team has won the Emperor’s Cup as well as the Japanese Super Cup. Barcelona will no doubt still be missing the talent that Vissel Kobe are now enjoying.
Xabi Alonso – Real Madrid
From 2009 until 2014, Alonso brought something incredibly special to Real Madrid and to La Liga as a whole. His biggest talent had to be finding his teammates with the ball. His skills, when it came to passing, were second to none and every team that he played for benefited from that magic touch. When Alonso joined Madrid from Liverpool, his former club described him as irreplaceable.
Alonso excelled in his deep-lying central midfield role. As soon as he found the ball coming his way from defenders, his intelligence would send Madrid on the attack with his precision passes. Perhaps the one area that Alonso could’ve performed better in is the number of goals that he scored. That being said, every other area of his game was at the highest level.