Salva playing for Levante in 2007
|Full name||Salvador Ballesta Vialcho|
|Date of birth||22 May 1975|
|Place of birth||Zaragoza, Spain|
|Height||1.84 m (6 ft 1⁄2 in)|
|Málaga B (coach)|
|1996||→ Écija (loan)||17||(6)|
|2003||→ Bolton Wanderers (loan)||6||(0)|
|2003–2004||→ Málaga (loan)||34||(18)|
|2004–2005||→ Atlético Madrid (loan)||28||(7)|
|2007||→ Levante (loan)||14||(5)|
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
Salva was born in Zaragoza, Aragon. After making his professional debuts with Sevilla FC, he won the Pichichi Trophy in the 1999–2000 season, scoring 27 goals to lead La Liga's scoring charts for Racing de Santander. He then moved to Segunda División with Atlético de Madrid (freshly relegated) and proceeded to lead the side with 21 league goals, although the Colchoneros did not return to the top level.
In the 2001 summer Salva joined Valencia CF, netting five goals to help the side become league champion after a 31-year drought. He was rarely used in the following season, and was subsequently briefly part of the Bolton Wanderers side which avoided Premier League relegation in 2003; he had another two loan stints from 2003 to 2005, with Málaga CF for which he netted 21 official goals, namely a hat-trick in a 5–1 league home crushing of FC Barcelona on 3 December 2003, and Atlético Madrid, being subsequently released and signing with the former.
In late January 2007, Salva joined top flight strugglers Levante UD on loan from Málaga, now in the second division. On 4 February he played his first league match for the club in an away win against Real Madrid, scoring the game's only goal; after the season's end, with the Valencian managing to retain their status, he returned to Málaga, and netted seven goals to help the Andalusia outfit achieve top division promotion.
As he spent most of 2008–09 hampered by recurrent injuries, Salva was still able to contribute, notably coming from the bench against neighbours UD Almería and helping turn the score from 0–2 to a 3–2 home win with two goals, on 8 February 2009. On 15 March he added another brace against another neighbouring club, in a 2–2 home draw against former side Sevilla; when the season ended, he was released after his contract expired.
In the dying hours of the 2009 August transfer window, Salva signed a 1+1 contract with Albacete Balompié, aged 34. However, at the end of his first season, where he appeared almost exclusively as a backup, the 35-year-old was one of 14 players who were not given a contract extension, being released and retiring shortly after; subsequently he re-joined former team Málaga as a youth coach, alongside former club teammate Francesc Arnau.
Salva played four international matches with Spain, the first being a friendly against Poland on 26 January 2000, coming in for Ismael Urzaiz in the 70th minute of an eventual 3–0 win in Cartagena.
- Spain U21
- Racing Santander
- Atlético Madrid
Off the pitch, Salva is notorious for his outspoken personality and his political beliefs, far to the right of most of his peers' and routinely characterized as overtly nationalistic, ultraconservative, militaristic and at times even fascist, as well as his aggressive demeanor towards fellow players at the opposite side of the political spectrum.
- Bolton find solution in Ballesta; UEFA.com, 30 January 2003
- El Málaga deja en coma al Barcelona antes del clásico (Málaga leaves Barcelona in a coma before clásico); El Mundo, 4 December 2003 (Spanish)
- Salva's Spanish goal; UEFA.com, 18 March 2004
- Málaga make Salva signing; UEFA.com, 14 July 2005
- "Salva Ballesta, cedido al Levante" [Salva Ballesta, loaned to Levante] (in Spanish). Fichajes. 25 January 2007. Retrieved 23 February 2014.
- "Pañolada galáctica" [Galactic pañolada] (in Spanish). El Mundo Deportivo. 5 February 2007. Retrieved 31 December 2013.
- Málaga 3–2 Almeria; ESPN Soccernet, 8 February 2009
- Málaga 2–2 Sevilla FC; ESPN Soccernet, 15 March 2009
- El Albacete da la baja a 14 jugadores, entre ellos a Salva (Albacete releases 14 players, Salva included); Diario AS, 23 June 2010 (Spanish)
- El Málaga cuenta con Arnau y Salva como entrenadores de cantera para La Academia (Málaga counts with Arnau and Salva as youth team coaches for the Academy); La Opinión de Málaga, 23 March 2011 (Spanish)
- Salva Ballesta, nuevo entrenador del Atlético Malagueño (Salva Ballesta, new manager of Atlético Malagueño); La Opinión de Málaga, 12 July 2013 (Spanish)
- "España dota de argumentos a Camacho con otra goleada" [España gives reasons to Camacho with another routing] (in Spanish). El Mundo. 26 January 2000. Retrieved 31 December 2013.
- Declaraciones de Salva Ballesta tras los atentados (Salva Ballesta statements after terrorist attempts) (Spanish)
- Salva Ballesta ataca de nuevo: ‘Que Viva España, hijos de puta’ (Salva Ballesta strikes again: ‘Long Live Spain, sons of bitches’); Pandeblog (Spanish)
- Salva Ballesta y la ‘españolidad’ (Salva Ballesta and ‘Spanishness’); Pandeblog (Spanish)
- Entrevista al futbolista Salva Ballesta: “Se están devaluando las Fuerzas Armadas y creo que los Altos Mandos deberían dar un taconazo” (Interview with footballer Salva Ballesta: “The Spanish Armed Forces are being devalued and the high hierarchies should take a stand”); Tortuga, 1 June 2006 (Spanish)
- Perlas fascistas del futbolista Salva Ballesta, denunciado por el Barça por injuriar a Oleguer (Fascist gems by footballer Salva Ballesta, sued by Barça for insulting Oleguer); Kaosenlared, 13 March 2007 (Spanish)
- Salva Ballesta dice que respeta más a una caca de perro que a Oleguer Presas (Salva Ballesta says he has more respect for dog shit than Oleguer Presas); Pandeblog (Spanish)
- Las declaraciones más polémicas de Salva Ballesta (The most controversial statements of Salva Ballesta); EITB, 20 February 2013 (Spanish)
- Celta turn down Salva Ballesta for ‘political reasons’; Inside Spanish Football, 19 February 2013
- BDFutbol profile
- National team data
- Salva at National-Football-Teams.com
- Salva career statistics at Soccerbase
- Stats and biography at CiberChe (Spanish)