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FC Barcelona 2010/11 Season in Review: Victor Valdés

MADRID, SPAIN - APRIL 16: Victor Valdes of Barcelona reacts during the La Liga match between Real Madrid and Barcelona at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on April 16, 2011 in Madrid, Spain.  (Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images)
MADRID, SPAIN - APRIL 16: Victor Valdes of Barcelona reacts during the La Liga match between Real Madrid and Barcelona at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on April 16, 2011 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images)
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Report: Victor Valdés had another excellent season. He gave up only 25 goals in 44 games and in the Spanish League set the 2nd lowest number of goals per game in the history of the competition, allowing a goal every other game (0.50 goals/game). By allowing only 16 goals in the Spanish La Liga campaign Valdés won his fourth, and third consecutive Ricardo Zamora Trophy. He is just another Zamora trophy away from tying Barça legend Antoni Ramallets' record of five.

This wasn't the only list Valdés climbed on. He also moved into second place on the all-time Barcelona appearance list for goalkeepers. Victor is four games away from tying Andoni Zubizarreta's record which currently stands at 410.

The Barca custodian once more proved he is an excellent shot-stopper, but he also showed poor positioning on occasion, resulting in a soft goal (Robin van Persie goal anyone?). But let's not dwell on the occasional mistake Victor has made as he also made some spectacular saves; saves that not many goalkeeper are capable of. Think back to the saves he made on Santi Cazorla and Giuseppe Rossi (both Villarreal) or when he stopped Mohamed Tchite's penalty in Week 1.

On numerous occasions Valdés had to cope with a makeshift defense in front of him, but no matter who started, Victor demonstrated terrific command of the penalty box. Although, toward the end of the season he found himself on a different page with the most used defender, Gerard Pique.

Overall it was another successful season for Barcelona's first choice goalkeeper as in every competition he appeared in he eventually lifted the trophy (Valdés didn't play in the Copa del Rey).

The trophies he added this season bring his career total to an amazing fifteen, and he is only 29. In addition to his club success he started the season earning a debut with Spain's national team and was a member of the World Cup winning squad.

Moment of the season: Valdés had several good games this season, but he was simply brilliant against Villarreal on 2 April 2011. Barcelona ended up winning the game with the score of 0-1 courtesy of Gerard Piqué's strike, but the real star of the match was Victor Valdés. Early in the game he pushed away two Giuseppe Rossi's strikes and in the dying minute, while Barca were clinging to a tight lead, produced a stunning save with his feet on a close range Santi Cazorla drive.

Vila-real CF - FC Barcelona (0-1) 2010-2011 - Aturades Victor Valdés highlights (via danielgs86)

Stats:

Appearances
44
Games started
44
Started on the bench
10
Substitute in
0
Substitute out
0
Minutes played
4135
Goals conceded
25
Saves
92
Clean sheets
21
Fouls Committed
1
Fouls suffered
6
Yellow Cards
8
Red Cards
0

Record with Victor Valdés in the starting lineup: 33-9-2

2011/12 Outlook: Victor Valdés will definitely return as the No.1 goalkeeper of FC Barcelona (was there even any question?). Valdés has proved he can win the Zamora trophy every season and you can expect he will again be in the running for the prestigious award. Another thing I can guarantee is that he won't play in the Spanish Cup, baring an injury to José Manuel Pinto, of course.

Next Up: José Manuel Pinto

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