Real Madrid won the La Liga title last season thanks to an unprecedented defensive resilience. Los Blancos surrendered a league-low 25 goals owing to the efforts of Thibaut Courtois, their Belgian goalkeeper, who held an astonishing league-leading 18 clean sheets. However, Courtois has been linked with a move away from the Spanish capital and former Chelsea goalkeeper Diego Alves could be set for a return to his native Portugal.
Alves would be able to fill the void left by Courtois if he manages to secure a move away from Real Madrid. The 32-year-old veteran keeper has been heavily linked with a return to his homeland recently after being left out of Zinedine Zidane's squad for this summer's World Cup in France. He had earlier stated that he would like to remain at the club for another season but now it looks like he will leave after all.
If Courtois does leave then Alves would be first choice for many La Liga fans. The veteran keeper has proved himself time and again over the years by keeping numerous balls out of the net, most notably during his time at Liverpool when he kept 13 clean sheets in 2001/2002 season. That record still stands today as one of the best records in Premier League history.
Courtois' departure would likely see Alves take over as number one at Real Madrid.
CF Real Madrid Real Madrid is the most successful club in Spanish football, having won 34 titles.
|Number of teams||20|
|Current champions||Atlético Madrid (11th title) (2020–21)|
|Most championships||Real Madrid (34 titles)|
|Current: 2020–21 La Liga|
He has more than twice as many goals as his current boss, Zinedine Zidane, and 36 more than Real Madrid's all-time leading scorer, Ruud van Nistelrooy.
Messi, 36, led Barcelona to their 26th La Liga title last season, earning a third consecutive and sixth overall Pichichi Trophy as the league's best scorer, tying him with Telmo Zarra (Athletic Club, 1940-1955) for the most all time. 3. European Golden Shoe winner 2016/17.
He has also been named the La Liga Player of the Year three times, more than any other player.
As for international competitions, Messi has won five Champions Leagues, two FIFA World Cups and one Olympic gold medal with Argentina. He is also the only player to have scored in each of UEFA's four major club tournaments (European Cup/Europa League, UEFA Champions League, UEFA Europa League, UEFA Super Cup).
His record is unlikely to be broken soon, given that he has missed nearly half of Barcelona's games due to injury over the past two seasons. However, if he returns to form this year, it is possible he could break some more records.
Madrid Atletico On Saturday, Atletico Madrid won the 2020–21 La Liga title with a 2-1 victory over Valladolid. The win also secured their third consecutive league title.
The game was tied 1-1 after 90 minutes and 3-3 after extra time before Diego Simeone's side prevailed in the 112th minute through a late goal from Antoine Griezmann. The club president Enrique Cerezo admitted defeat just moments before Atletico's victory was confirmed.
This is the first title for Atletico since 2014 when they defeated Barcelona 4-2 on aggregate in the final. It is also the third title for Simeone who has won three trophies in two years after winning the UEFA Champions League with Diego Simeone's side in 2019.
However, this is Atletico's first title in six attempts and only the second in 100 years. In 1931, they finished as runners-up to Barcelona and have not been able to replicate that success since then. They did win the Copa del Rey in 1952 but have never been able to win any other major titles.
La Liga table
|1||Atletico de Madrid||86|
Benfica goalkeeper Costa Pereira after the 1962 defeat to Santos. Santos' most successful Copa Libertadores season began in 1962, when the club was seeded in Group One alongside Cerro Porteno and Deportivo Municipal Bolivia, and won all but one of their group matches (a 1-1 away tie versus Cerro).
Pele is the most successful domestic league goal-scorer in football history, according to the IFFHS, with 650 goals in 694 league matches and a total of 1281 goals in 1363 games, including unofficial friendlies, which is a Guinness World Record.
Casillas, 31, still has plenty of football left in him after winning La Liga for Real Madrid under Jose Mourinho. Casillas is unquestionably the best goalie in the world. He has won every major international trophy available to a goalkeeper, including two UEFA Champions League titles with Madrid.
The Spanish keeper has also been included in the list of the top 10 goalkeepers of all time by The Guardian newspaper. He is ranked fifth.
As far as individual trophies are concerned, he has won the PFA Player of the Year award twice, in 2004 and 2007. He also has the unique record of having kept a clean sheet in each match he has played this season for Madrid.
In fact, only three other people have achieved this feat - Peter Schmeichel, Gordon Banks and Manuel Neuer. None of them are still playing at the top level today. But it looks like Casillas may be able to stay at Madrid for another year because of some injury problems he has had recently.
However, despite all his achievements, there is still room for improvement because Casillas hasn't yet managed to win any major international tournaments with Spain. He failed to qualify his country for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa and for the Euro 2012 tournament last year.