Real Madrid and FC Barcelona are often revered as the two clubs in world football who most football players would love to play for if given a chance. For most players, the opportunity of donning the famous red and blue Blaugrana colours or white of Real is too good to turn down.
The European Giants boast an impressive 18 European Cups between them (13 Real Madrid and 5 Barcelona), it is obvious to see why players are so keen on getting themselves a contract with either of the Spanish giants.
The focus on both the teams has been even more significant in the last ten years, thanks, to the domestic rivalry and quite ridiculous goalscoring records of both Leo Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. Both the players will go down as club legends when all is said and done, even though Ronaldo left “The Galacticos” to join the Italian side Juventus.
However, unlike ‘CR7’ and ‘Leo’, there are many players who opted to represent both Real Madrid and Barcelona during their professional careers, with some even choosing to make the direct switch from Nou Camp to Bernabeu, or vice-versa.
It takes a particular player to be given a chance by both Real and Barca, but these men can boast of that very feat. These are some of the players who have played for both Real and Barca.
Only a few players can boast such polarising records as Cameroon legend, Samuel Eto’o if we talk about the impact they had on both teams. The Cameroonian smashed in the goals for Real, and it was not long that Barcelona took notice of him, making their move to sign Eto’o in 2004.
It proved a wise move for Barca as well as Eto’o, who found himself as the key striker for manager Pep Guardiola in an exciting and trophy-laden spell for the Spanish side.
Eto’o forged thrilling strike forces with the likes of the Brazilian magician Ronaldinho and Frenchman Thierry Henry. While he had his problems at times with managers like Frank Rijkaard, there’s little doubting his success at the club.
Ronaldo could have gone on to break all the goalscoring records, had it not been for the severe knee injuries he suffered during his career.
While some good years passed between his spells with Real and Barca, he scored goals for both the clubs. While the Balugranas got to see the raw, lightning-fast, young Ronaldo, the Galacticos got more of an accomplished all-round player.
“El Phenomenon” scored 34 goals in 37 games for Barcelona which earned him a mega-money move to Internazionale before Real Madrid took a chance on the Brazilian after he successfully captained the Brazillian side to World Cup success in the year 2002. However, Ronaldo only captured one La Liga title during his tenure in Madrid and even failed to win the Champions League.
Most of the people would picture Luis Enrique in the blue and red colours of Barcelona, given how successful he was as a player and then manager with the club. He won more than nine trophies in 3 years as a manager.
Prior to being one of the main men at the Camp Nou, Luis did actually make more than 150 appearances for Real Madrid before sealing a move to the Blaugrana.
In terms of impact, controversy, and worldwide coverage, only a few transfers had captured the imagination of people. One of them was Luis Figo’s move from Barcelona to Madrid in 2000.
Figo was worshipped at Barcelona. He spent more than five years at the club and won 2 La Liga titles along with the UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup. Controversially, he made a move to Real Madrid after the Los Blancos triggered his release clause of 60 million Euros, which made him the most expensive player at that time.
Pigs’ heads, among other things, were thrown at Figo at every opportunity when he returned to the Nou Camp the following season.
Figo won two La Liga titles with Madrid, before getting his hands on the European Cup in 2002.
The Argentinian forward, Javier Saviola moved to Barcelona in 2001 as a 19-year-old for a whooping £15 million. He was the joint fourth-to scorer after e scored 17 goals in his first season for the Blaugranas.
But, he never really got going for the Barcelona, in his six years including two loan spells away from the club.
Barcelona refrained from renewing his contract after his second loan spell with Monaco, and Real stepped in signed him up for free, becoming the last ever player to ever move directly between the two rivals.