Club profile: Real Sociedad

Club profile: Real Sociedad

Publish on 02/14 at 12:35 - G. BOXALL


Draped in its unique Basque identity, the club from San Sebastian is playing its fifth season in Champions League competition and will face Paris Saint-Germain tonight in the round of 16. Let’s take a deeper look at the history and some notable players passed by Spain’s other ‘Real’ club.

Real Sociedad were founded in the Basque city of San Sebastian in 1909, and traditionally followed a transfer policy of signing only Basque players (like their rivals Athletic Bilbao) up until 1989. Their legacy of developing local players is still present today, with on average six players in Real Sociedad’s line up that feature Basque academy talent.

Captain Mikel Oyarzabal is the team’s current Basque flag bearer. “Our academy is fundamental, especially when things aren’t going well - but our academy is up there with the standard needed for Real Sociedad,” said the midfielder, who has played for the club since 2015.

Griezmann, Xabi Alonso, David Silva: Real Sociedad's notable players

The txuri-urdin have an academy that has produced some real talent. Antoine Greizmann burst onto the scene at the club, where he scored 46 goals in 180 appearances before joining Atlético Madrid in 2014. Liverpool and Real Madrid legend Xabi Alonso began his career at the club, making 114 appearances between 2000 and 2004.

Other big names have passed by Basque club, including Manchester City legend David Silva who was the club captain who lifted the Copa Del Rey (Real’s first major trophy since 1987) in 2021. Carlos Vela also passed by the club, scoring 66 goals in 219 appearances from 2011 to 2018 before joining Los Angeles FC.

The Basque club travel to the Parc des Princes tonight (21:00 CET) hoping for an upset against Ligue 1 Champions Paris Saint-Germain. The return leg in San Sebastian will take place on 5th March 21:00 (CET).

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