The 38-year-old, who turns 39 in July, replaces the Athletic club striker, who was born five months before him in 1981.
Joaquin Sanchez has become LaLiga’s oldest player
Retirement of Aritz Aduriz means that Real Betis captain Joaquin Sanchez has become LaLiga Santander’s oldest player. The 38-year-old, who turns 39 in July, replaces the Athletic club striker, who was born five months before him in 1981. Espanyol’s Diego Lopez is currently the second-oldest player in the division and was born in November 1981. Behind him are Getafe Jorge Molina, Real Mallorca’s Salva Sevilla, Villarreal’s Santi Cazorla, Eibar’s Charles, and Leganes’ Ivan Cuellar. By the time the contract expires in 2021 at Betis, Joaquin will be almost 40 years old. By then, he will enter the top 10 most former players in LaLiga Santander’s history. The midfielder is also on the verge of more milestones. If he plays all 11 remaining league fixtures, he will overtake Raul as the outfielder with the most appearances in LaLiga Santander’s history on 593.
Sanchez wants to finish his career playing
Former Athletic, Barcelona, and Valencia goalkeeper Andoni Zubizarreta holds the record number of appearances in Spain’s top flight from 622. Also, Joaquin is only one league goal away from his best result in one of nine seasons that he achieved during campaign time 2002/03. If he scores again this season, he will be one of the five oldest scorers in LaLiga Santander’s history alongside Donato, Caesar Rodriguez, Alfredo Di Stefano, and Larbi Ben Barek. After Aduriz was forced to resign due to injury problems, Joaquin does not want to feel the same fate. “I thought it would be embarrassing for me if my last season would be like that,” Joaquin said. “After so many years, I would like to end my career playing.”
“It would be a shame for me to do it any other way. I haven’t considered my retirement, but the end of such a life would be a real shame.”