El Centrocampista

RECORD BREAKERS – A look at La Liga’s most memorable statistics

Espanyol fell to their third consecutive away defeat of the season yesterday, suffering a largely self-inflicted loss at the hands of modest Levante.

Mauricio Pochettino’s men have now lost their last six league games away from the Estadi Cornellà-El Prat, and have not managed a road victory since they defeated Getafe 3-1 way back in January.

It doesn’t make great reading for fans of Barcelona’s ‘other’ club but they have a long way to go until they go down in the record books.

Spanish football fans, like their counterparts around Europe, love a good statistic.

There are records for every conceivable event in the history of La Liga and Espanyol’s current unwanted run, gives us an opportunity to look at some of these fascinating figures.

Where shall we start?

Continuing the theme of losing streaks would be an ideal place, but maybe the long-suffering fans of Espanyol should stop reading for a moment as their club have suffered the most top flight defeats of any side in Spain.

A whopping 974. Ouch.

How about the most losses in one season?

That dubious distinction goes to the Sporting de Gijon side of 1997/98 who managed to give all three points to their opponents in 29 of their 38 games.

2,610 minutes of football played without so much as a single point.

They also went 24 games without a win that season and got two records for the price of one. Bargain.

Most consecutive losses in a season?

The impotent UD Las Palmas managed to lose an impressive 11 games on the bounce in the 1959/60 season.

Not surprisingly, the Canarian side finished bottom of the table and took a trip to the segunda division.

No club has managed to go a whole season undefeated in the league’s current format of 38 games – although Athletic Club (1929/30) and Real Madrid (1931/32) did manage the feat when the league was contested over 18 games.

Now, I was trying to keep the two powerhouses of the Spanish game out of this article but, obviously,that is impossible as they dominate the majority of the other records.

Barcelona and their bitter rivals both share a number of records with each other; least number of losses in a season – one.

Real Madrid went through the 1988/89 season with a sole loss, Barça equalled that in their magnificent season of 2009/10.

The Catalans also broke the highest points total in that glorious season – notching a mammoth 99 on the board.

The boys from Madrid probably have the last laugh on the points debate however, as their 3838 total points is more than any club in the history of La Liga.

Record unbeaten runs also feature both clubs, although it is the great Real Sociedad side of the early 1980s that have gone the most games without suffering a league defeat.

The Basques managed an imperious 38 game stretch between April 1979 and May 1980.

That gives them bragging rights over their close rivals Athletic Club.

Unsurprisingly, the big two are not far away; Madrid have the longest unbeaten home record with a unbelievable 121 games going their way between 1957 and 1965.

Barça join in the fun as well, with their 23 consecutive away games undefeated between February 2010 and April 2011, posting another record.

Deportivo la Coruña may be in a club turmoil at the moment but that is nothing new for the side that won the league title just ten years ago.

Between January 1965 and December 1966, the Galicians failed to score a single goal.

None. Nothing. No había nada.

Super Depor redeem themselves however as they kept a solid 26 clean sheets during the 1993/94 season.

Back to the Bernabeu now and los blancos smashed in a stunning 107 goals in the 1989/90 season to lead the team scoring charts.

Barcelona aren’t left out however, as they have had the record goal difference in a season(+74) on two occasions, 2009/10 and 2010/11.

The record for the least number of goals scored in one campaign (15)  goes to CD Logroñes, although they probably won’t be writing about that one in their club history.

I’m not going to bore you with the most La Liga or Copa del Rey triumphs, as we all know the answers, although the highest scoreline may be of interest…

Athletic Club 12-1 Barcelona in February 1931 – one record that Barça wish they didn’t hold, I’m sure.

We’ll finish with a few individual records now;

Most league appearances? 622 by the legendary Barcelona and Spain goalkeeper, Andoni Zubizaretta.

Oldest player to have featured in La Liga? A bone-creaking 48-years-old Harry Lowe, who turned out for Real Sociedad against Valencia in 1935.

At the other end of the spectrum, Celta Vigo’s Francisco Bao Rodríguez is the youngest player to have played in the top flight at 15 years eight months and eleven days.

Iker Muniain is the league’s youngest goalscorer after the Athletic Club midfielder put one past Real Valladolid in October 2009 aged just 16 years 289 days.

Cristiano Ronaldo’s 40 goals last season broke new ground but he has a way to go until he surpasses the all time highest goalscorer, Telmo Zarra, who notched a awe-inspiring 252 goals for Athletic Club between 1940 and 1955.

Finally, the record for the most goals in one game is shared by two players.

Agustin Sauto Arana bagged himself seven of the 12 goals Athletic Club put past Barça in February 1931, and the legendary Hungarian, Laszlo Kubala equalled the tally when he fired in seven for the Catalans in 1952 against Sporting de Gijon.

There are bound to be more records falling over the next few months, especially as the duel between Ronaldo and Lionel Messi heats up, but there is one team who will be hoping to end their current run of poor results before they start taking a nervous peak into the history books…

Espanyol need that away win.

One Comment

  1. Paul

    23 March, 2014 at 17:45

    Do you know the highest number of goals scored in a single La Liga round?

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