It has been 15 years since Leo Messi scored for Barcelona for the first time. His debut came on 16 October 2004 against Espanyol when, in the 82nd minute of the match, Frank Rijkaard brought him on the pitch instead of Deco.
During his 16 seasons with the first team, he played 718 games. He has 627 goals, 248 assists, 505 wins, 48 hat-tricks, and 34 titles. Periodically we hear reports of Leo leaving. Sometimes he moves to Real Madrid, sometimes to Inter, even to Pep in England. But he still wears a Blaugrana’s T-shirt (except for the last two months, of course) and with his impressive football career continues to amaze us.
European players who have spent their entire football careers in one club:
Sport offers the outstanding players of Europe who have spent their entire football careers in the ranks of one club.
AC Milan legend Paolo Maldini has spent 25 seasons at his home club, 1984/85 – 2008/09, making 902 appearances and winning 26 titles.
Speaking of loyalty to the team, the first player who comes to mind is Francesco Totti. “Gladiator” in “Roma,” like Maldini, had 25 seasons, 1992/93 – 2016/17. He played 785 games for the Roman club and scored 307 times.
They are followed by Ryan Giggs, who has spent 24 seasons at Manchester United, 1990/91 – 2013/14. In 927 games, Wales have won 35 titles.
As for Leo, it is unlikely he will be in Barcelona for 25 seasons. She turns 33 in June and needs another ten years to improve on Maldini and Totti. No one knows when the day will come when Messi leaves. This could happen in Barcelona or Rosario, but we do not doubt that the Argentinean star will give the main years of his career only to the club with which he has conquered world football.
Carles Rexach (16 seasons), Carles Puyol (16 seasons), and Salvador Sadurni (15 seasons) also stand out with their starting and ending careers at Barcelona.