FC Barcelona’s French connection grows

FC Barcelona’s French connection grows

New signings Lucas Digne and Samuel Umtiti add to the already long list of Frenchman who have graced the club

With the recent signings of Lucas Digne and Samuel Umtiti, the list of Frenchmen who have graced FC Barcelona grows.

They become the 21st and 22nd French players to have joined the club. Here is a look back at their fellow countrymen who have donned the Barça jersey.

The first Frenchmen to defend the clubs colours were René Victor Fenouillère (1902-1903), Henry Normand (1908-1909), Jim Carlier (1913-1914), Maurice Bigué (1913-1914), Jean Verdoux (1917-1918), Peijean (1928), Jules Robisco (1948) and Lucien Müller (1965-1968).

There was then a 31 year gap between Müller and the next French player to sign for FC Barcelona, but the last 20 years have seen an influx of big names from the nearby country serve the club.

Laurent Blanc (1996-1997)

Blanc joined the club shortly after winning the French title with Auxerre. At Barcelona, he went on to show his defensive quality but was hampered by injuries in his only year with the club.

Christophe Dugarry (1997-1998)

Joining from AC Milan, Christophe Dugarry won La Liga in his sole season in Barcelona before signing for Olympique Lyonnais.

Frèderic Déhu (1999-2000)

The defender joined Barça after winning the Ligue 1 title and the French League Cup with RC Lens. Déhu returned to France a year later to sign for París Saint-Germain.

Emmanuel Petit (2000–2001)

Petit signed from Arsenal as a midfielder, but eneded playing at centre-back and left-back for the Catalans, before joining Chelsea a year later.

Philippe Christanval (2001-2003)

The defender who joined from AS Mònaco played 32 games for Barcelona, and then went on to sign for Marseille.

Ludovic Giuly (2004-2007)

Giuly, too, came from AS Mònaco, and went on to become one on to become one of the club’s most successful ever Frenchmen. Giuly was part of the famous Frank Rijkaard side which won the Champions League in 2006. He left in 2007 to join Roma.

Ludovic Sylvestre (2005-2006)

The midfielder signed from Turkish club Kayseripor for Barça B, but also played two matches in the league for the first team. He then moved on to Sparta Prague.

Lilian Thuram (2006-2008)

He arrived from Juventus and donned the Barça jersey for two seasons. Thuram won the Spanish Super Cup in 2006.

Thierry Henry (2007-2010)

Henry signed from Arsenal and went on to write history with the club. The legendary striker won an array of titles, including the Champions League in 2009.

Éric Abidal  (2007-2013)

The defender spent six years at the club and won everything under Pep Guardiola. Abidal became a cult hero at Barça, both for his footballing qualities but also for his fighting character, after twice beating cancer. He left in 2013 to join Monaco.

Jéremy Mathieu (2014-...)

After two years in La Liga with Valencia, Mathieu has been a capable asset for the club at centre-back and at full-back.

Samuel Umtiti (2016 - ...)

Signing from Lyon, Umtiti has great potential to become one of the best in his position and follow in the footsteps of Abidal.                                                                                     

Lucas Digne (2016-...)

The latest Frenchman to enter the club’s doors is Digne, who joins from PSG. Big things are expected of the young left-back who has the characteristics to evolve into a world class defender.

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Força Barça

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