Ranking every player to wear No.7 for Barcelona since 1995

Quick Reads
Ousmane Dembele during the match between FC Barcelona and Athletic Club Bilbao, corresponding to the week 26 of the Liga Santander, played at the Camp Nou Stadium, in Barcelona, on 27th February 2022.

Barcelona has been home to some world-class forwards over the years – but very few of them have worn the No.7 shirt.

Ousmane Dembele has become the 11th player to wear the jersey since La Liga introduced fixed squad numbers for the 1995-96 season.

We’ve ranked every player to wear the No.7 shirt for Barcelona since then, from worst to best.

11. Alfonso

Despite being a Real Madrid academy graduate, Alfonso joined Barcelona from Real Betis in 2000 for £14million.

The striker was a revelation on Championship Manager but failed to hit the same heights in real life, scoring just five goals in 32 appearances in all competitions in 2000-01.

10. Arda Turan

Having starred for Atletico Madrid, expectations were high when Turan completed a £24million move to Barcelona in 2015.

Due to Barca’s ban on registering new players, the Turkey international wasn’t able to play for the club until January 2016. It really wasn’t worth the wait.

Turan made 55 appearances in all competitions before being shipped off on loan to Istanbul Basaksehir in 2018, where his misdemeanours included a suspended prison sentence after firing a gun in a hospital following a fight with a pop star and a 10-match ban for pushing an assistant referee.

9. Philippe Coutinho

After completing his £142million move to Barcelona in January 2018, Coutinho initially wore the No.14 shirt before changing to the No.7 six months later.

The Brazil international failed to live up to expectations in 2018-19 and reclaimed his initial No.14 in 2020 after returning from a loan spell at Bayern Munich.

Things just never clicked at the Camp Nou – as it transpired he was neither a replacement for Andres Iniesta nor Neymar – and Coutinho’s now out on loan at Aston Villa. Arguably one of the worst signings in the history of football.

READ: Ranking the 10 worst signings of Josep Maria Bartomeu’s Barca presidency

8. Antoine Griezmann 

Griezmann wore the No.17 shirt during a turbulent debut season at Barcelona before switching to the No.7 shirt that he wore at Atletico Madrid.

The World Cup winner registered a respectable 35 goals and 17 assists in 102 appearances for the club, but the fact he’s now back on loan at Atleti tells you he never quite recaptured his best form.

Another symbol of the financial mismanagement and disastrous recruitment that defined the latter days of Josep Maria Bartomeu’s presidency.

7. Eidur Gudjohnsen

Gudjohnsen was never a first-team regular in what was a star-studded Barcelona side between 2006 and 2009, serving as back-up to the likes of Thierry Henry and Samuel Eto’o.

The Iceland international still made over 100 appearances and was a useful squad member, helping the club win the treble in his final season at the Nou Camp.

READ: A tribute to Eidur Gudjohnsen, football’s equivalent to Forrest Gump

6. Ousmane Dembele

What might’ve been if not for the injuries.

Few that have watched the French attacker over the years would deny his immense talent. Unfortunately, Dembele’s been unable to consistently show that – to the extent he himself is responsible is a matter of debate.

Arguably his best run of form at Barcelona has come in recent weeks, wearing the No.7 shirt, inherited from Griezmann.

It’ll be a bitter pill to swallow if he leaves on a free this summer – as looks likely – just as finally starts to be reaching his potential under Xavi.

 

5. Javier Saviola 

Saviola was among many Argentine attackers dubbed ‘The New Maradona’ prior to Lionel Messi’s emergence, and he joined Barcelona in 2001.

While the forward never quite fulfilled his potential. He still scored 60 goals in 144 appearances over the next three years before his career tailed off in the mid-2000s.

READ: Javier Saviola: The ‘little rabbit’ who almost became a world-beater

4. Henrik Larsson

After spending seven years at Celtic, Larsson arrived at the Nou Camp during the twilight of his career and was plagued by injury problems during his two years in Spain.

Yet the striker still left a lasting legacy at Barcelona, registering two crucial assists off the bench Arsenal in the 2006 Champions League final.

“People always talk about Ronaldinho and everything, but I didn’t see him today, I saw Henrik Larsson,” Thierry Henry said after the game. He came on, he changed the game, that is what killed the game.

“All the time you talk about Ronaldinho and Eto’o and people like that. Let’s talk about the proper people who make the difference, that was Henrik Larsson, who made two assists. I didn’t see Ronaldinho and I didn’t see Eto’o.”

READ: Revisiting Barcelona’s last Xl before Lionel Messi’s first-team debut in 2004

3. Pedro

While Pedro only wore Barcelona’s No.7 shirt for two years, he still won a La Liga title, the Copa del Rey, the Champions League and the UEFA Super Cup during that time.

Not bad.

2. Luis Figo

Not many Barcelona fans would care to admit it now, but Figo was once a hero in Catalonia.

The Portugal international developed into one of the best players in the world during his five years at the club, winning two La Liga titles, two Copa del Rey’s, the UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup and the UEFA Super Cup.

However, his controversial move to Real Madrid in 2000 means he can’t be any higher than second on this list.

READ: 10 players to commit their future to a club then leave: Figo, Suarez, Campbell

1. David Villa

Villa was the icing on the cake in an era-defining Barcelona side, helping the club win a La Liga title and the Champions League in 2010-11.

A serious injury blighted his second season at the Nou Camp, but the striker still managed 48 goals in 119 appearances before leaving in 2013.

READ: A tribute to David Villa, a man who never arrives too late nor too early


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