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Golden Messi

Leo Messi won his fifth Ballon d’Or in early 2016, becoming the first player to ever win the award that many times. Miguel Ruiz says that “it is a privilege to be able to immortalise such unique moments. Leo Messi is the greatest ever.” 

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Claudio Bravo was warming up before a game with Atlético Madrid and Miguel Ruiz went up to him and said he bet he would not be able to touch the crossbar with his foot. The Chilean goalie took the challenge, and wow! He did it! And Ruiz caught it all on camera.

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The imposter

“A historic penalty, even if it was scored by an imposter, Luis Suárez”, says Miguel Ruiz about the now-famous indirect penalty when Leo Messi passed the ball to... Well, it later transpired that it wasn’t meant for the Uruguayan at all, but for Neymar Jr!.

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Time out

“The FC Barcelona players need to get away from all the pressure and atmosphere in the build-up to matches, and they have different ways of doing that” explains the first team photographer. That’s why he’s so fond of this picture of Ter Stegen, which captures the essence of what he means to perfection.

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Small is beautiful

“Not all first division grounds are huge stadiums. Eibar is an example of how the minnows battle alongside giants.” Ipurua only has room for 6,267 spectators, and every seat is taken when sides like Barça are in town. There’s something special about such places, and this photo pictures the intimate surroundings nicely.

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In the boots

Leo Messi won the match ball for a hat trick and here it is in the chest of boots”, confirms Miguel Ruiz, who explains that this is the normal procedure when players score three in a game, in this case in the 5-1 win at Rayo.

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Lost in thought

This picture was taken after the Champions League quarter final. Miguel Ruiz explains that it depicts how “Andrés Iniesta was looking to be on his own after the disappointment of being knocked out by Atlético Madrid.” Barça had just lost 2-0 at the Calderón.

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Take that!

This photo shows why FC Barcelona is like one big family. “Rafinha, Adriano and Douglas are celebrating Dani Alves’ birthday. Like anyone else, the players like to play jokes on such occasions” says Ruiz, an expert at catching the right moment both on and off the pitch.

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Eye, eye!

The FC Barcelona players go on road trips almost every week, and they are quite used to having the official photographer around them. And they’ll often make jokes with him, as in this case with Neymar Jr.

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There at last!

Luis Enrique lets loose after finally winning the Liga title.” The first team manager is seen storming off the bench after the final whistle in Granada and a championship that went right down to wire finishes with a happy ending.

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Love parade

This is a spectacular image from the celebrations of the team’s 28th Liga title. “The trophy was happily paraded through the streets of Barcelona” and fans were able to salute their heroes."

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The boy from Brazil

Neymar Jr scoring the winner in a very hard-fought Copa del Rey Final” says Miguel Ruiz. The Brazilian found the net late on against Sevilla and the photographer managed to snap the exact moment when the ball passed Sergio Rico.

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All eyes

This picture shows “Luis Enrique with the Camp Nou behind him in a shot taken from the tunnel.” It’s a fine portrayal of the sheer passion that the manager puts into his work and the way that he never misses a detail that might help him to make the right decisions.

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Blaugrana sky

The colours are what make this picture, the evening light in the sky brilliantly echoing the blaugrana of the players’ uniforms as they warm up before a game.

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Class of his own

Neymar Jr, along with Luis Suárez and Leo Messi, form a mighty attacking trident. In this particular image, Miguel Ruiz wanted to capture “the essence of a unique player who has fun as he plays, here showing off his amazing skill during a match.”

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Ready, steady, go!

Miguel Ruiz tries “to show every moment of the players’ experiences” and here he took a great picture of the huddle at the end of the warm-up “from an angle that I had never attempted before a game.”

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