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Footballers with the most La Liga appearances

Wednesday20 January 2021 | 14:30
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Have you ever wondered which players are on the list of the footballers with the most La Liga appearances? If you have, then stick with us in this article to find your answers.

Spain's top-tier league, known as La Liga, is one of the most competitive league’s in the world. Playing in La Liga with big teams like

Real Madrid

,

Barcelona

, and

Atletico Madrid

is the dream of many great players worldwide.

Spain's top tier league was named the top league in Europe by UEFA's league coefficient rankings from 2013 to 2019. From its inception until today, great players like Andoni Zubizarreta, Zidane, and one of the greatest to ever footballers Ronaldo and Messi have played at La Liga.

There have been many players who have kicked the ball in La Liga, but many of them have not stayed for a long time. It is not easy, playing in Spain's top tier league for a long time, but there have been players who have played more than 500 times in La Liga.

In the following article, we will present

footballers with the most La Liga appearances

. It is interesting to know that all the top ten players on this list are Spanish.

Most appearances by a player in La Liga history

Here is the full list of players with the most la Liga appearances, which starts with a goalkeeper.

Andoni Zubizarreta

  • Position:

    Goalkeeper

  • Appearances:

    617

  • Years:

    1981-1998

Andoni Zubizarreta, the former Spanish goalkeeper with 617 caps, is the first footballer on the list of

footballers with the most La Liga appearances

. Born in Vitoria-Gasteiz,

Spain

started his football career in Aretxabaleta. On 19 September 1981, he made his La Liga debut as an

Athletic Bilbao

goalkeeper. 

Zubi moved to Barcelona in 1986 for €1.7 million, which was a record for a goalkeeper, quickly replacing Urruti, and after that, he rarely missed a match. During his spell at Barcelona, he won four La Liga titles, Copa del Rey title on two occasions, Supercopa de Espana title twice, one European Cup, as well as 1992 UEFA Super Cup.

The goalkeeper moved to Valencia After the 1993–94 UEFA Champions League. In that final match, Barca lost 0–4 to

A.C. Milan

. The legend, one of the

LaLiga top players with the most appearances

, ended his career at Valencia. 

For several years, the legend held the record for the most capped player for the Spain national team and also the most clean sheets in La Liga. Zubi, who was one of Barcelona's greatest goalkeepers ever, was known for good shot-stopping abilities. The Spanish legend retired in 1998. 

Joaquin

  • Position:

    Winger

  • Appearances:

    565

  • Years:

    2000-2013/2015-

The current La Liga footballer, Joaquin Sanchez Rodriguez, is

Real Betis

' captain. Joaquin began his professional career in Real Betis B. The next season the winger moved to the first team, and Betis returned to La Liga after one year out.

He played six seasons, and then moved to

Valencia

CF for €25 million, becoming the team's most expensive signing until then. In his debut season, Joaquin scored five goals in 35 appearances that he made for Valencia. The 39-year-old footballer played 216 games with the Bats, scoring 30 times and providing 31 assists for his teammates.

In 2011, he left the Bats and joined

Malaga

for €4 million, and on 28 August, Joaquin played for the first time for Malaga.

Joaquin played 71 matches and scored ten goals during his spell at the White and Blues. At the age of 32, Joaquin played in a league other than La Liga for the first time. In 2013, the Spanish winger joined ACF Fiorentina, and during two years, he made 71 appearances.

In 2015, he returned to La Liga and rejoined the Betis a three-year contract. On 8 December 2019, at the age of 38 years and 140 days, he scored a hat-trick, becoming La Liga's oldest player to set this record. Previously Alfredo Di Stefano held the record of 37 years. On 16 July 2020, Joaquin made his 551st La Liga appearances and broke the Raul records with 550 appearances.

Exclusive SPORTMOB video

Given that he has extended his contract until the end of 2021, do you think he can break Zubi's record?

Raul

  • Position:

    Striker

  • Appearances:

    550

  • Years:

    1994-2010

One of the greatest footballers in Real Madrid history, Raul Gonzalez Blanco, is third in the list of

footballers with the most La Liga appearances

. In the 1994–95 season, the legend began his professional career with Real Madrid C, and in 9 games, Raul scored 16 times.

Due to his extraordinary performances, he was promoted to the first team under Jorge Valdano. He held the record of youngest footballer ever to play for the senior club until Alberto Rivera broke his record later that same season.

Raul, one of the

most appearances by a player in La Liga history

, scored 229 goals in 550 La Liga appearances that he made for Real Madrid, becoming the fifth-highest goalscorer in La Liga's history. 

During 16-year spell in Real Madrid, he registered 324 in 741 appearances (all competitions) that he made for the whites, becoming Real Madrid's second high scorer of all time. The legend won six La Liga titles with Real Madrid. During his career, he played 1000 times for five teams.

In 2010, the creative striker left La Liga and joined Bundesliga. Currently, the Spanish legend is the manager of Real Madrid Castilla.

Eusebio Sacristan

  • Position:

    Midfielder

  • Appearances:

    543

  • Years:

    1983-2002

Eusebio Sacristan Mena, widely known as Eusebio, is considered one of the best footballers in La Liga history. In the list of footballers with the most La Liga appearances, Eusebio, with 543 games, is in fourth place.

The Spanish midfielder started his professional career with

Real Valladolid

, played 252 games, and scoring 19 times during four years. In 1987 Eusebio joined Atletico Madrid, and after sole season, he moved to Barcelona.  The legend scored 18 times in 272 appearances that he made for the Catalans.

Eusebio won six La Liga titles during his spell in Barcelona. During the 38.030 minutes that he played in La Liga, Eusebio scored 36 goals and provided four assists for his teammates. In his last two seasons in Barcelona, the midfielder just played in 36 matches. So he left Nuo Camp in joined

Celta

. At the age of 36, the Spanish footballer, one of the players with most La Liga appearances, announced his retirement. 

Paco Buyo

  • Position:

    Goalkeeper

  • Appearances:

    542

  • Years:

    1980-1997

In the list of footballers with the most La Liga appearances, the Spanish goalkeeper is in fifth place. The legend of Sevilla and Real Madrid, Paco Buyo, won 12 trophies with the latter club. He started his professional career with RCD Mallorca in 1975, but five years later, he made his La Liga debut with Sevilla FC.

He made 207 appearances (all competition) for Sevilla and conceded 236 goals.  His good performances at Los Palanganas caught the eyes of the Real Madrid owner. In 1986 Buyo joined the Whites and replaced Miguel Angel. The legend, one of the LaLiga top players with the most appearances, played in all 44 league games.

He ended his career at Real Madrid, winning La Liga titles on six occasions with the Whites. Buyo also won two Copa del Rey titles, Supercopa de Espana title four times, and one Copa Iberoamericana title in Real Madrid.

During the 48.688 minutes that the Spanish goalkeeper played at La Liga, he conceded 543 goals and kept 213 clean sheets.

Manolo Sanchis

  • Position:

    Center-Back

  • Appearances:

    523

  • Years:

    1983-2001

The Spanish footballer is in sixth place in the list of footballers with the most La Liga appearances. A product of the Whites youth system, Sanchis played for the first time for Real Madrid's first team on 4 December 1983 against

Real Murcia

.

The retired footballer, one of the most appearances by a player in La Liga history, played 43.378 minutes in La Liga, scoring 33 goals for his only club.

Exclusive SPORTMOB video

Finally, the legend retired in 2001, scoring 37 goals in 655 overall games for the Whites.

Iker Casillas

  • Position:

    Goalkeeper

  • Appearances:

    510

  • Years:

    1999-2015

If you are a Real Madrid fan, you know great Iker Casillas. The legend goalkeeper, one of the footballers with most La Liga appearances, is regarded as one of the greatest goalkeepers ever.

Saint Iker, one of the

players with the most La Liga appearances

, started his career at La Fabrica, and at the age of 16, he moved to the senior side. On 15 September 1999, he played at the group stage match of 1999–2000 UEFA Champions League, becoming the youngest keeper to play in the competition.

However, Mile Svilar broke the record in October 2017.Casillas played for the first time in La Liga against Athletic Bilbao.

During Casillas's successful time at the Whites, he won five La Liga titles. The legend also won two Copa del Rey titles, Supercopa de Espana title on four occasions, UEFA Champions League title three times, two UEFA Super Cups, 2014 FIFA Club World Cup, as well as two Intercontinental Cups. The Spanish goalkeeper played 45.688 minutes in La Liga, conceding 524 goals and keeping 177 clean sheets.

It's worth mentioning that the great Iker Casillas, one of the La Liga top players with the most appearances, has the second-most appearances for the Spain national team. It is interesting to know that alongside

Gianluigi Buffon

and

Manuel Neuer

, he was named as the IFFHS World's Best Goalkeeper five times.

Sergio Ramos

  • Position:

    Center-Back

  • Appearances:

    510

  • Years:

    2005-

Sergio Ramos, one of the footballers with most La Liga appearances, is regarded as one of the best defenders of all time. He started his career in Sevilla's youth system. On 1 February 2004, Ramos made his La Liga debut against Deportivo de La Coruna.

He played in 45 games, scoring three goals. His extraordinary performances caught the eyes of the Real Madrid owner. Finally, in 2005 he moved to Real Madrid for €27 million, which was a record for a defender. Ramos scored his first goal for the Whites against

Olympiacos.

He has scored 74 goals and has provided 31 assists in 510 appearances that he has made for Real Madrid in La Liga. The strong defender, one of the

players with most la Liga appearances

, has won the La Liga title on five occasions. Ramos also has won two Copa del Rey title, Supercopa de Espana title four times, four UEFA Champions League titles, three UEFA Super Cups, and four FIFA Club World Cups.

The Spanish defender, known for his leadership ability, becomes the most capped player in the Spanish national team's history and also Spain's eighth-highest goal scorer. It is interesting to know that with 191 cards, he also is the most carded player in La Liga.

Xavi

  • Position:

    Mideilder

  • Appearances:

    505

  • Years:

    1998-2005

Xavier Hernandez Creus, known as a Xavi, regarded as one of the best midfielders in football history. In the list of footballers with the most La Liga appearances, the midfielder is in ninth place with 505 appearances. The product of La Masia made his La Liga debut against Valencia on 3 October 1998.

He played 17 seasons for the Catalans, winning the La Liga title on eight occasions. During the 39.177 minutes, he scored 58 goals and provided 128 assists for his teammates. The legend also won three Copa del Rey titles, six Supercopa de Espana titles, UEFA Champions League title on four occasions, two UEFA Super Cups, and two FIFA Club World Cups, during his spell at Barcelona. 

The Spanish midfielder, one of the most appearances by a player in La Liga history, is the second-most decorated Spanish player in history. In 2015, he left Barcelona and joined Al Sadd, and in 2019 Xavi hung up his boots.

Miquel Soler

  • Position:

    Left-Back

  • Appearances:

    504

  • Years:

    1983-2003

Miquel Soler, the retired Spanish football player, is in tenth place in the list of footballers with most La Liga appearances. The former footballer started his professional career Espanyol youth and in the 1983–84 season made his La Liga debut in Budgerigars.

The legend went on to play for Barcelona, Atletico Madrid, Sevilla FC, Real Madrid, Real Zaragoza, and RCD Mallorca.He played 38.776 minutes in La Liga, scoring 12 times and providing one assist for his teammates. Soler won two La Liga titles with Barcelona.

How did you like our article on footballers with the most La Liga appearances?

Lionel Messi

has made 502 appearances in La Liga. Given that in the 2020-21 season, the Argentine star kicks the ball in the La Liga, the list will definitely change any time soon.

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