Kevin Williams


Gràcies, Capità, aka “There will never be another”

There was a farewell ceremony for our irreplacable Capità, Carles Puyol. Words fail me, but the video above is the full ceremony.

There are many culers who only know a Barça for which Captain Caveman was the Capità. But even for those of us who know other Barças, it will still be unfathomably weird to NOT have the No. 5 not be THE No. 5. Call him a lion, a rock, whatever you like, but Carles Puyol has been an absolutely spectacular player who never gave a shard less than 100 percent, even when his body put a ration on the quality and quantity of that all out.

And typically of Puyol, he said that his best moment was when Abidal lifted the Champions League trophy at Wembley. Figures.

There is no “next Puyol.” When Xavi moves on, there will be no “next Xavi.” Those are players who define a club (not just a team), define an era. You don’t, you can’t replace those kinds of players.

And what can you really say to a man who is so emblematic of a great club and a great team on his last day as a player for that team, except “Gràcies, Capità.”

Kevin Williams is a journalist with the 'Chicago Tribune', based in Chicago, Illinois. This article first appeared in the Barcelona Football Blog and is republished here with permission.