34-year-old Jesús Navas will stride out onto the pitch tonight wearing the armband for a club at which he is adored.
His quest - to captain Sevilla to Europa League glory.
Navas, incredibly, was part of the Sevilla teams that won the trophy, formerly known as the UEFA Cup, back in 2006 and 2007. The Spaniard moved on to England with Manchester City to enjoy a fine career in the Premier League before a return to his hometown club, one which he serves and skippers with great distinction and pride. Once a winger at Man City, Navas has smoothly transitioned into a conventional right-back with attacking instincts.
Sevilla is aiming to win a record sixth Europa League title, it would be a third for Navas but his first as a captain. Needless to say, he's a club legend and "a part of Sevilla's history" according to sporting director Ramón "Monchi" Rodríguez.
Navas will make his 520th appearance for the Andalusian club on Friday night and would become the most decorated player in the club's history with another medal. He claimed UEFA Cup success in 2006 and 2007 and also helped the club win the Copa del Rey in 2007 and 2010. Add the 2006 UEFA Super Cup and the 2007 Spanish Super Cup into the mix and it's six trophies and counting.
Navas bagged an assist to lead Sevilla to their first-ever European final in 2006 and he repeated the feat some 14 years later when he laid on Luuk de Jong's winner against Man United five days ago.
🏆 Navas' accolades
- 🏟 519 Sevilla appearances (most all-time)
- 🎯 102 Sevilla assists (most all-time)
- 🥇 Six Sevilla trophies (joint-record)
- 🦁 Premier League title & two League Cups with Man City
- 🧢 42 Spain caps
- 🌍 World Cup title with Spain
- 🇪🇺 European Championships title with Spain
Navas was honoured by the club in 2018 when they announced that their main training stadium would be named after him.
"'It's beautiful to have a stadium named after me, but it also means a lot of responsibility. As a player who has come through the club's youth squads like me, I am responsible for passing on our values to the younger players, responsible for showing the importance of being humble and to always work hard, which is the most important thing."
Always unassuming and hardworking, Jesús Navas has the chance to stand in the limelight once more wearing the colours of the club that he loves.
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