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UEFA have created an all-time XI of the players who have featured the most in the last 16 editions of the Team of the Year. Guess what? Barça have an incredible six representatives in the starting eleven with Club legends Puyol, Piqué, Xavi, Iniesta, Henry and Messi.
The full ultimate XI looks like this: Casillas, Lahm, Puyol, Piqué, Ramos, Gerrard, Xavi, Iniesta, Henry, Messi, and Ronaldo. Let’s take a look at the Barça players who have starred in Europe:
Carles Puyol - 6 (2002, 05, 06, 08, 09, 10)
Carles Puyol has made it into the UEFA Team of the Year an incredible six times and the legendary Club captain starred for club and country as he won the Champions League three times in 2006, 2009 and 2011 as well as the 2008 European Championship and the 2010 World Cup.
Gerard Piqué - 5 (2010, 11, 12, 15, 16)
The Catalan defender has been nominated seven times in the last eight years and he has made the team on five occasions. It is easy to see why as he is considered one of the best centre halves in the world with his character, class and strength in the air making him a key figure for Barça since he returned in 2008.
Xavi Hernández - 5 (2008, 09, 10, 11, 12)
The Barça midfielder made the side between 2008 and 2012 during his golden spell as chief conductor of the blaugranas’ total football. He is statistically speaking the most successful player in Spanish football history and his upringing in La Masia make him the perfect example of Barça values.
Andrés Iniesta - 6 (2009, 10, 11, 12, 15, 16)
The current Barça captain and Xavi’s partner in crime forced his way into the Team of the Year in 2009 and stayed there until 2012. He then missed out for a couple of years but has been back in for the last two. The playmaker is elegant and modest and has lit up the Club since he arrived as a twelve-year-old.
Lionel Messi - 8 (2008, 09, 10, 11, 12, 14, 15, 16)
Messi has made an incredible eight appearances in the UEFA team and he has been nominated every year since 2006. He has only missed once since his first appearance in 2008. The Argentinian is the best player in the world, he is technically perfect and has an unbelievable scoring record, making him an obvious choice for the UEFA all-time XI.
Thierry Henry - 5 (2001, 02, 03, 04, 06)
Ex-Arsenal and ex-Barça forward was a candidate for the first six votes and his consistency meant he was included in the first four. The graceful French forward arrived in the 2007/08 season after his appearances in the Team of the Year. He won the Treble with Barça in the 2008/09 season.
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