The Primera División, also known as La Liga, is the top professional football division in Spain. It got its start in 1928 and has become one of the most popular leagues around the globe. Additionally, this is where many international soccer superstars call home, such as Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. While the La Liga champion tends to be either Real Madrid or Barcelona, there are currently 20 teams that make up the league, some of which do secure the championship now and then.
We combed through the rosters of all La Liga teams to see which players are a little on the “old” side. While you’re not going to find any senior citizens competing at this level of football play, it’s still interesting to see which players may be nearing the ends of their respective careers.
La Liga Veterans
The oldest current La Liga player is Sergio Mora, a midfielder for Getafe CF. He checks in at age 38 and has had a long professional soccer career. The second oldest La Liga player is Aritz Aduriz, a 36-year-old center-forward who plays for Athletic Bilbao. Aduriz recently signed a contract extending his playing time with Athletic Bilbao until June 2019, proving that age means nothing as far as his performance goes.
The third oldest La Liga player is Gorka Iraizoz, a goalkeeper for Girona FC. Iraizoz, 36, is a relatively new member of the squad, having transferred from Athletic Bilbao in the summer of 2017. The fourth oldest La Liga player is Daniele Bonera, 36-year-old centre-back for Villarreal CF. Bonera spent many years playing for Serie A teams in Italy but moved to La Liga in 2015.
The fifth oldest La Liga player is 36-year-old Joaquín, a right winger for Real Betis. He’s spent most of his career in La Liga, aside from a few years spent in Fiorentina, a Serie A team. This isn’t his first stint with Real Betis, either – fans of the squad much celebrated his return in 2015.
The Oldest (Ever) La Liga Players
Looking over La Liga’s long history, we discovered that the oldest player to ever take the field for a team was Harry Lowe, who was 48 years, 7 months, and 14 days old when he did this feat for Real Sociedad in 1935. This was unusual even for the period. Lowe was an Englishman and was managing the team at the time, and when one of his players got sick (teams weren’t allowed to make changes), he suited up for the match, which his team lost 7 to 1.
The second oldest La Liga player ever to play was Ricardo, who was 41 years, 5 months, and 2 days old in 2013 when he took the field for CA Osasuna. CA Osasuna lost the game to Real Madrid 4 to 2.
The third oldest player was Amedeo Carboni. Carboni was 41 years, 1 month, and 10 days when his club, Valencia CF, defeated CA Osasuna in 2006.
Old Vets and Young Oldsters
The oldest players on each La Liga team vary quite a bit, ranging from 38 to 31 years old. One of the youngest “oldest” players is Cristiano Ronaldo, an aforementioned international superstar. At 32 years old, he’s the eldest member of Real Madrid. As one of the world’s highest-paid soccer players, he’s certainly earned his place in the spotlight and was recently named FIFA Player of the Year. He’s been with his club since 2009 and is signed until 2021.
Other older players include Fernando Navarro (35, Deportivo de La Coruña), Gabi (34, Atlético Madrid), Chory Castro (33, Málaga CF), Diego López (36, RCD Espanyol), and Michael Krohn-Dehli (34, Sevilla FC).
La Liga fan? Hoping to watch your favorite vets play for a few more seasons? Good news. Fanatics.com has some of the coolest La Liga gear, whether you’re a Ronaldo freak or just want to watch Sevilla wreak havoc on their opponents.
Top 5 oldest players in La Liga
- Sergio Mora
- Artiz Aduriz
- Gorka Iraizoz
- Daniele Bonera
- Joaquín Rodriguez