Jordi Alba was immensely proud as he picked up the best male Catalan sportsman award on Tuesday. The player, born in L’Hospitalet de Llobregat, had a brilliant 2018 and was key to Barcelona’s league and cup double.
At 29 Alba is in the best form of his footballing career. He had to go to Valencia to break through before returning to Barcelona, but got there in the end, a triumph of perseverance.
Alba’s rise has made him an indispensable footballer for Enresto Valverde and the best in his position, left back, world wide.
Alba has played 271 games for Barcelona, scoring 14 goals, while he has provided close to 50 assists.
He has won the Champions League in 2015, four La Ligas (13, 15, 17, 18) and four Copa del Reys - the last four years. On top of that, the 2015 Club World Cup and European Super Cup, and three Spanish Super Cups (13, 16, 18).
Alba won Euro 2012 with Spain too, where he is similarly vital.
The defender has formed a special connection with Lionel Messi at Barca. Alba has set up 18 goals for Messi, over a third of his 47 assists, while Messi has set up five of Alba’s 14 goals.
Alba has a contract until 2020 and hopes to renew with Barca, fulfilling his dream of retiring at the club.