Jordi Alba celebrates his 24th birthday this Thursday and after just over six months back at the Club, he has already established himself as a key member of the team and become a firm favourite with the Camp Nou crowd. Alba, who was signed to strengthen a position weakened by Abidal’s illness and the injuries to Adriano, has played in 35 of the team’s games so far this season – starting in all but three of them -after performing last summer in the European Championships and the Olympic Games
The Catalan wing back has adapted quickly to the squad – something that must in large part be due to the years he spent at the Club in the academy system before joining Cornella and then Valencia. Particular impressive has been the way he has built up an understanding down the left flank with Andres Iniesta, as well as the five goals he’s scored so far this campaign - against Deportivo and Celta in the league, Real Madrid in the Cup and Milan and Celtic in the Championships.
Big game appearences
Fast and always keen to attack, Alba’s importance to the team can be seen from the fact that he has been used in all the team’s biggest games so far this year – starting five out of the six games against Real Madrid and both matches against AC Milan, as well as the demanding league games against Atletico Madrid, Malaga or Valencia). There’s no doubt about it, Alba has proved himself a safe bet for the team since his return.