Real Madrid’s British footballers ranked


Caroline Weir has become just the seventh British player to sign for Real Madrid, joining on a free transfer from Manchester City.

The 27-year-old spent four seasons at the Women’s Super League club, scoring 38 goals in 124 appearances. Two of which – both against Manchester United – were nominated for the FIFA Puskás Award.

Weir joins a Real Madrid side which finished third in the Primera Iberdrola last season, qualifying for the Champions League first round.

Founded as the independent Club Deportivo TACÓN in 2014, the women’s team was acquired by Real Madrid in 2019.

Weir will subsequently be the first British women’s player to sign for Los Blancos, and just the seventh player in history.

To mark the occasion, GiveMeSport Women ranks the six other stars who have represented Real Madrid, and analyzed how they fared.

Jonathan’s Woodgate time at Real Madrid was nothing short of disastrous. The defender completed a shock transfer to Los Blancos in August 2004, despite being injured.

He didn’t make his debut until September 2005, and it’s fair to say it went catastrophically. Woodgate scored an own goal within 30 minutes, and was then sent off in the 66th minute.

Things didn’t get much better. Woodgate appeared just 14 times for Real Madrid across two seasons, scoring once against Rosenborg in the Champions League.

Jonathan Woodgate

Michael Owen joined Jonathan Woodgate at Real Madrid in the summer of 2004. Signed in the Galactico’s era, the striker was competing for a place in the starting line up alongside Raul and Ronaldo Nazario. As a result, he often found himself on the bench.

Owen did make the most of his time on the pitch, finishing the 2004-2005 La Liga season with the highest ratio of goals scored against minutes played, but ultimately it never quite clicked for the 2001 Ballon d’Or winner. He soon left for Newcastle.

Michael Owen

Bearing in mind there have only been six British players to play for Real Madrid in history, it is remarkable that David Beckham was one of three in the 2004-2005 season.

The legend joined Los Blancos in 2003, and over 155 appearances, he scored 20 goals and racked up 59 assists.

Beckham also earned two trophies during his time at Real Madrid – the Supercopa de España in 2003, and La Liga in 2007.

David Beckham

Now a co-commentator and pundit on ESPN and BT SportSteve McManaman was once part of the Real Madrid side which won the Champions League in 2000 and 2002.

During his four-year stint at the club, he also clinched two La Liga titles, a Supercopa de España, a European Supercup and an Intercontinental Cup.

McManaman was known for being a versatile player while at Real Madrid, playing on either wing or in the middle of the pitch.

Steve McManaman

2) Laurie Cunningham

Laurie Cunningham was the first British star to play for Real Madrid, making the move in 1979.

Renowned for being a skillful and patient forward, he is still the only Real Madrid player to have received an ovation from the Camp Nou crowd, after giving an electric performance during a 2-0 victory in February 1980.

Cunningham, who sadly died in a car crash in 1989, won one La Liga title and two Spanish cups with Real Madrid.

Laurie Cunningham

Yes, Gareth Bale has a strained relationship with Real Madrid fans, but he is definitely the British player who has fared the best at the club.

After joining in 2013, the Welsh star enjoyed a brilliant first season, scoring 22 goals and setting up 19 in 44 games.

Spending nearly 10 years with the club, Bale earned four Champions League trophies, one Copa Del Rey, one La Liga title, two Spanish Super Cups, three European Super Cups, and four World Club Championships. That’s some trophy cabinet.

Gareth Bale

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