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Top 20 Football Players Of All Time

7raul7 . . . Comments

[NOTE: The term “football” in this post refers to Soccer, not American Football.] There has been much debate over the best footballers and rightly so, considering the sheer amount of players and the vastness of ‘the beautiful game’. It is astonishing how FIFA has more members than the UN. Played simply everywhere, today I would like to introduce this list which will, I expect, gather criticism, but constructive criticism is appreciated as always – so please feel free to speak up!


Lillian Thuram


One of the best defenders of all time from France, he is famous for his 2 goals in the 1998 world cup semi final against Croatia when France came from behind to win 2-1. France eventually won the world cup beating Brazil 3-0. At club level, he has played in AS Monaco, Juventus and FC Barcelona.

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Roberto Carlos


He has played for Spanish club Real Madrid for eleven years, winning four leagues, three UEFA Champions League trophies, and two Intercontinental Cups. He is also one of only six players to have played more than one hundred matches in the Champions League. He is especially famous for a free kick against France on June 3, 1997, where he shot from 35 m (110 ft) from the centre-right channel, and scored.


David Beckham


David Beckham is a leading English footballer whose popularity extends beyond the field and into international celebrity. Beckham was already a crowd-pleasing star for Manchester United when he married Spice Girls star Victoria Adams in July of 1999; the combination proved irresistible to the press and public, and they became one of Britain’s most famous couples. As a player Beckham is particularly known for his free kick expertise and spectacular long-range shots while his right foot is the national treasure of England.


Oliver Kahn


One of the most successful German players in recent history, having won eight German championships, six German cups, the UEFA Cup (1996), the UEFA Champions League and the Intercontinental Cup (both 2001). His individual contributions have earned him four consecutive UEFA Best European Goalkeeper awards, three IFFHS World’s Best Goalkeeper of the Year awards and two German “Footballer of the Year” trophies.




Often called the White Pelé, he is commonly considered one of the most skilled dribblers and finishers ever and possibly the world’s best player of the early 80’s. He was also known as one of history’s greatest free kick specialists, able to bend the ball with pace and accuracy as well as having an extremely powerful shot.


Lev Yashin


A superb goalkeeper, perhaps the best in the history of the game, he was a Soviet sports hero. Yashin spent his playing career with the Moscow Dynamo club, and after retirement was a coach there. Dynamo won five league championships and three cups due in large part to Yashin’s domination of the goal. Yashin’s playing was an important element in the Soviet national team’s gold medal win at the 1956 Olympics, and he tended goal for the team in three World Cups. He became the only goalkeeper to be named European footballer of the year, and was awarded the title of world goalkeeper of the 20th cent. Fondly known as the black spider (after his Black Goal keeper uniform..


Ronald Koeman


Besides being a defender at the centre back position, Koeman was also known for his powerful right-footed free kicks and dead ball ability where he scored many vital goals for the team, and it was from a free-kick that he scored FC Barcelona’s winning goal in the 1992 European Cup final. Ronald Koeman scored 193 league goals in 503 matches (ahead of Daniel Passarella who netted 182 goals in 556 matches) during his career, more than any other defender in the history of football.


Luis Figo

Luis Figo

Figo is a football hero who began his professional career in Portugal, his native land, then made his name in Spain playing for powerhouse teams FC Barcelona and Real Madrid before switching to Inter Milan in 2005. With his deft stop-and-go dribbling and aggressive style, the midfielder is known more as a playmaker than as a pure scorer. His breakthrough year was 2000, when he led Portugal to the semifinals of Euro 2000 and was named European Footballer of the Year. The same year he moved from FC Barcelona to rival Real Madrid for a then-record fee of $56 million.


Alvaro Recoba


Recoba’s strengths are his dribbling, technique, pace and a strong, accurate left-foot shot. He is a free-kick specialist, and has scored goals of great quality, examples of which were his two goals during his debut with Inter, and basically all the goals scored during his time at Venezia. It is said that few, if any, have been born with Recoba’s ability; however, his mentality continues to fail him at the most crucial moments.


Alfredo di Stefano


Nicknamed Saeta rubia (Blond arrow), was a powerful forward with great stamina and tactical versatility. He could also play anywhere on the pitch and despite being well-known as a forward, was great in defense. He is currently the 3rd highest scorer in the history of Spain’s top division, with 228 goals in 329 games. Di Stéfano is also Real Madrid’s highest league goalscorer of all time, with 216 goals in 282 league matches.


Raul Gonzalez


Called the ‘Angel of Madrid’ and simply known as Raúl, he is a Spanish football striker who plays for Spanish La Liga club Real Madrid. Also the three-time winner of the UEFA Champions League and is the second all-time leading scorer in official UEFA competitions after Filippo Inzaghi with 64 goals. He took over the captaincy of Real Madrid when Fernando Hierro departed in 2003, and has since shown himself to be a natural and respected leader.


Michael Platini


Platini was a member of the French national team that won the 1984 European Championship, a tournament in which he was voted the best player and top goalscorer. Platini, Alain Giresse, Luis Fernández and Jean Tigana together made up the “carré magique” (magic square), the group of midfield players that formed the heart of the French national team throughout the 1980s. He is also widely regarded as one the best passers in football history as well as one of history’s greatest free kick specialists and finishers. He holds the record for most goals scored in European Championship final.


Carlos Alberto Torres


is a former Brazilian footballer, one of the most highly regarded defenders of all time. He captained Brazil to victory in the 1970 World Cup and is a member of the World Team of the 20th Century, as well as the U.S. National Soccer Hall of Fame. Carlos Alberto’s goal against Italy in the final of the Football World Cup 1970 is considered one of the greatest goals ever scored in the history of the tournament.



Ronaldo 500 500

A brilliant and fluid forward, Ronaldo became one of international soccer’s great stars of the 1990s and Brazil’s biggest soccer hero since Pele. Nicknamed “The Phenomenon,” the talented forward has played for Cruzeiro, Eindhoven, Barcelona, Inter Milan, Real Madrid and AC Milan, amassing numerous records, championships, and cups. An international superstar, Ronaldo has been on the Brazilian national team since 1994 and was part of World Cup–winning teams in 1998 and in 2002, when he was the tournament’s top scorer

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Gerd Müller


Müller was short, squat, awkward-looking and not notably fast; he never fit the conventional idea of a great footballer, but he had lethal acceleration over short distances, a remarkable aerial game, and uncanny goalscoring instincts. He could turn quickly and with perfect balance in small spaces at speeds that would cause other players to fall over. He also had a knack of scoring in unlikely situations. With national records of 68 goals in 62 international appearances, 365 goals in 427 Bundesliga games and the international record of 66 goals in 74 European Club games, he was by far the most successful striker of his day.


Johann Cruyff


Cruyff is a former Dutch football player and manager/coach. He was named European Footballer of the Year three times. In 1999, Cruyff was voted European Player of the Century in an election held by the IFFHS, and came second, behind Pelé in their World Player of the Century poll. Cruyff was known for his technical ability, speed and acceleration, but his greatest quality was vision, based on an acute sense of his team-mates’ positions as an attack unfolded. He is believed Cruyff superior to any previous player in his ability to extract the most from others.


Franz Beckenbauer


German football (soccer) player. He is credited with inventing the modern attacking sweeper position. Nicknamed “Der Kaiser,” Beckenbauer is the only man to both captain and manage World Cup-winning teams (1974 and 1990, respectively). He spent most of his career with Bayern Munich, leading the team to three European Cup championships and four national titles. He was named European Footballer of the Year in 1972 and 1976. He is generally regarded as the greatest German footballer of all time and also as one of the greatest footballers in the history of the game.


Diego Maradona

Diego Maradona Escorpio

Maradona is an icon in Argentina. As a soccer player, he took his team to new heights and became a hero to sports fans – many of whom referred to him as “San Diego.” He also took sports paychecks to new heights, claiming unheard of salaries in trade after trade. Maradona was plagued by cocaine addiction, though, and his career came to an early end. His performance included two memorable goals against England, one scored with his hand (the referee mistakenly thought the ball struck his head) and now remembered as the “Hand of God,” and another that saw him dribble through a pack of defenders.


born 1940

P1 Pele

Pele – called “the Black Pearl,” was the greatest soccer player in the history of the game. With a career total of 1280 goals, he may have been the world’s most popular athlete after he was named Athlete of the Century by the world’s combined National Olympic Committees in 1999, though he never played in the Olympics himself. In March of 2002, the jersey Pelé wore in the 1970 World Cup final sold at auction for $220,850. Pelé became Brazil’s minister of sports in 1995, serving until 1998.


Zinedine Zidane

Zinedinezidane2 Narrowweb  300X424,2

Popularly nicknamed Zizou, he is a French former football midfielder. His career accomplishments include winning the 1998 FIFA World Cup and Euro 2000, in addition to the 2002 UEFA Champions League. He is also one of only two three-time FIFA World Player of the Year winners. Zidane won the Golden Ball as the MVP in the World Cups of 1998 and 2006. Zidane played his first professional First Division game for Cannes and quickly rose through the professional ranks. He sealed his reputation by scoring two goals in the World Cup finals of 1998, helping France defeat Brazil to claim its first-ever World Cup championship. Extremely passionate and a leader by example, he came first in an online poll conducted by UEFA.


Claudio Gentile

20020425 1982 Celebrate

Considered by many as football’s greatest ever man marker, Gentile’s finest hour came on 11 July 1982 when he produced an immaculate defensive display alongside fellow defender Gaetano Scirea, as Italy defeated West Germany 3-1 to lift the 1982 FIFA World Cup in Spain. Gentile came to international acclaim in the 2nd phase match against the title-holders Argentina, when he man-marked Diego Maradona out of the game by kicking and flooring him constantly throughout the game. In Italy’s next match against the favorites, Brazil, he first performed a violent tackle from behind on Zico and later ripped the Brazilian’s shirt in half during a tussle

This article is licensed under the GFDL because it contains quotations from Wikipedia.

Contributor: 7raul7

  • John

    In America, we call this soccer.

    • MEMEME

      But… this was invented first… so the real name is Football… there is no Soccer… and ´your´ Football should have another name.

      • Paul

        The word ‘soccer’ is actually a British term… it comes from asSOCiation football. It started as a slang term – Football was referred to as ‘soccer’, rugby was ‘rugger’.

        • Ali

          thats weird cz people in England never use the word soccer, it’s football and american football is only played in the US, they can keep their game, we have ours.
          great selection of players OP

          • Spyderman3012

            Sure they do. They have an entire program called Soccer Saturday. His info on the name of Soccer is accurate.

          • DGMdragunov

            But the word soccer is also used in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, etc.

    • james

      omg this list sucks no good players

      • Dom

        you obviously havent got a clue about football,Zidane is the best player in the last 20 years easily and theres alot of great players on the list. Missing Maldini tho and Beckham wouldnt make a top million players of all time in my view,Recoba had alot of ability but never really produced.Batigol has to be on the list one the greatest forwards ever.Ronaldinho is top 3 players of the last 20 years after Zidane and maybe the REAL Ronaldo

        • Ryan

          Zindane is definately not the best player in the last 20 years. Messi should be above Zidane, Ronaldo, Christiano Ronaldo and Ronaldinho. Pele and Maradona, Beckenbauer and Cruyff should be pushed up followed by Messi and then Zidane. Christaino Ronaldo would also have to be up there (although hes a bit of a douche), and agreed Beckham should be completely left off

          • Ali

            lol messi? when messi performs on the international level like zidane than you can say he is better. Messi fails to impress in all of his international games.
            plus zidane was great in the italian, french and spanish leagues, whereas messi only played in spain which xavi and iniesta behind him…

          • sher

            my friend, These are the players whos careers are over. MESSI COMPARING WITH ZIDANE ARE YOU KIDDING ME? Zidane was a hit in France, Italy and Spain.. He won the WORLD CUP, he was the its like comparing son and father

          • cpjt

            this list was written in 2008, hence why messi isn’t on there, as he would undoubtedly be if it was written today

          • ANONYM


          • Kingkyrie

            I would like to see the “best player ever” Messi play in another club or country. Best player my ass. No world cup no nothing. Stop comparing boys with men. Show some respect to to the trinity. PELE, MARADONA, ZIDANE ! Thats it, all the rest are bollocks

        • raul

          Pele is the best because he scored 1280 goals when zidane does that he can come and talk to him.

          • Kingkyrie

            yeah i scored 2000 goals in my backyard so what…

      • 1: Pele

        2: George Best

        3: Maradonna

        4: Messi (he could top a list like this in 10 years)

        5: Zidane

        Though he doesn’t make many lists like this, Roy Keane would be the first choice of most managers in an all time team. It’s also interesting that no one from the Liverpool dominated decades of the 70s and 80s gets a mention either.

        • zidane rabeh

          fuck you zidane is the best

      • luke

        nah cos pele ain’t the greatest player ever

      • anarator

        u think pele is bad? idiot

    • Jack Pooler

      Who ever made this list it is a complete joke. David beckham is never one of the 20 best footballers ever , he is one of the biggest becasue of his image but not one of the best. Personally I think George Best is the greatest ever player look what he done to Unitied , and half the time he was hungover or halfcut , the fame got to his head bu he beat player s with such ease , he was a great player and deserves to be in this list. Beckham does not .

      • Jack pooler

        Nor does recoba what has he ever done ? Batistuta and Vieri done more in that league. Zidane is the only player of recent to deserve to ghet in here. I am a Rnagers fan and thinking of some of the greats that have played with them are better than some of these players eg Brian Laudrop , Paul Gascoigne to name but a few , this list should be severally reviewed or split into different decades. Because we can't forget the Brazillian greats such as Jarzinho etc , and Maldini from Italy should be in it , especially if you have Beckham , Yes Beckham was a great playmaker but look at Xavi and Iniesta they are easily the best playmakers in the world just now yet not included in this list , sorry for this rant but I think some of it should be taken into consideration !

      • Paul

        Totally agree… Beckham is not even one of the best 20 English players of all time.
        Some notable omissions from the list – Can’t believe the great John Charles was left out.

      • dumfam

        what i think is that the best players are
        zinerdiene zidane 10
        ronaldo 9
        maradona 8
        rivaldo 7
        ronaldiniho 6
        cristiano ronaldo 5
        raul 4
        ibrahimavic 3
        pele 2
        messi 1

        • Andreas

          LOL nice joke bro.

          Ibra fails miserably to impress on any stage. Yet you put him 3rd, in front of Maradona and Cruyff? Oh wait you didn’t even include Cruyff (who is the reason Messi is this good right now).

          Clueless dumfam is clueless.

        • amal

          messi is last

          • nathan darby

            wtf wot r u ona bart messi is amazing. he has great centre of gravity hes the best dribbler ive ever seen and hes the best chiperererer ever

    • Roy

      in the rest of the world we called football.

    • JOSE

      its FOOTBALL ''get it right''?

    • Axel

      in the rest of the world we call americas stupids!

    • Adrian myers

      In the World we call this Football.

    • chris

      Yeah you americans obviously know nothing about soccer. Thats why you put players like Beckam who where never nominated in any player of the year awads in this list.

      • actually beckham is in second place behind Luis Figo in footballer awards.

    • uriel cruz

      in Mexico and in the 99% of the world we call it FUTBOL!!!!

    • Just not another stupid american

      In America, there are more than 1 country, but only 1 country call it soccer

      • Sean

        Canada AND the US call it soccer. So it’s not just one country that calls it that. Nice try though. It is funny watching the pseudo intellectuals run around.

    • Sean

      In “soccer” the game is played with the feet and a ball i.e football, In American Football it is played with your hands and a weird egg shaped thing i think on this logic Football should be the universal name for “Soccer” plus its the most popular sport in the world and i strongly disagreed with a lot of this list BECKHAM!?! I mean he’s not even in man uniteds greatest ever XI, and No Eusabio or even Ronaldihnio the list is deeply flawed with a lot of former galaticos who weren’t all that good except zidane and ronaldo

    • Artig

      In america, you are still stupid

      • Kingkyrie

        sorry but even in America you are. Not soccer, suckers, the lot of ya

    • Roberto Noguera

      ammm, soccer is not a great word to name the footbol, footbal is older than “amirican football”. The american football is an adaptation to rugby, but the footbol is an original sport, only in UE is named soccer, but I don’t see a problem, is only one name. Really I prefrer to name the sports by their real name. CIAO!! sorry fo rmy English ;)

    • Pedro

      Were is Eusébio?

    • Pedro

      It´s called football ok?
      Don´t think you can run everything in the world.

  • midknight

    As an American I haven't watched a lot of football, but this was a really great list

    • Marshall Ingham

      HUH? you're kidding me right!! I can tell you havn't watched alot of football…. this is meant to be a list of the top 20 players whoever played the game. Recoba??? roberto carlos??? lillian Thuram???? they didnt even make the top ten in the world when the were in their primes, let alone being in the top 20 players of ALL time!! Raul is one of the most overrated players to play the game and putting zidane number 1 is a disgrace… also i am aware that being american you probably think david beckham is a very good footballer because he is famous, trust me he is good footballer at best but wouldnt make the top 10 english footballers of all time let alone the world!!

      • Jordan

        Lillian Thuram was an incredible player

      • Kingkyrie

        even the American above knows more about football than you, so please just chew don’t talk…

  • Naval

    Why no mention of George BEST..He was the BEST

    • ian

      way overrated

    • James Alexander

      One of the difficulties is that even the truly great players differ in their ability; Pele was probably the best team player with Cruyff a close second on that skill (as well as both being outstanding players as individuals); George Best on the other hand wasn’t a particularly great team player (too individual), but he was without doubt the greatest player on the ball the world has ever seen, and certainly should be in the top 4 in general terms. It depends what you’re looking for, but my personal top four would be 1 Best, 2, Pele, 3, Maradonna, 4 Cruyff. It’s too early to make such a judgement about Zidane, Messi, Ronaldo etc.

  • Daithi

    List is made of fail.

    CR shouldn't be in that list, at least not for a few years if he keeps up his improvement.

    Zizou is a legend, but Pele, Maradona were better.

    And where is Georgie Best, Eusebio, Paulo Maldini, Van Basten?

    Raul shouldn't be on the list, nor should Thuram or Carlos.

    Peter Schmeichel was also a better keeper than Kahn.

    Ommitting Georgie Best and Eusebio though is unacceptable.

    • star

      n y u guyz forgettin roberto baggio??? hes the best italy has ever had
      i think the reak ronaldo should b in the top 5 coz until now theres no player who has reached his estimates

    • Elnino

      Raul shouldnt be ?
      He has wont the UEFA’s most valuable player more times than even Ronaldo.And has got every possible club honour.And staying 17 years with any club and adpting to squad and personnel changes is a big thing in any club,leave alone Real madrid.

    • JUANN


  • edwf2000

    yeah, dude, wrong Ronaldo in the picture

    • moe yassine

      fuck you and fuck cristiano ronaldo

      • nathan darby

        well said

    • wala

      thats da brazilian ronaldo dude!

  • Sugen

    1. Wrong Ronaldo picture. Cristiano Ronaldo can never ever become a world best player. An arrogant player he is, he cannot compare himself with Messi…a brilliant player with few words and much humility.

    2. David Beckham's presence is a joke. You were not able to say much about him other than his hype and hollywood-style charisma. Fame and fortune isn't football (or soccer).

    3. Zizou is a good player, no doubt about that. But to put him ahead of the perenial rivals (Pele and Maradona) is like saying gold is harder than diamond. He could be on this list but not necessarily ahead of these two.

    4. Lillian Thuram's presence here marvels me. i don't think he deserves a place here.

    All the same you have done your best and we can add the rest.

    Jaz_3: Yours is only a bias toward Premier League. No player on the list can make it on a top 30 ever. Nemanja Vidic's inclusion is absurd. In fact, outside of England and perhaps his hometown no one knows him. C Ronaldo is a diver, and does not play it fair. Always on the look out for penalty, fouls and red cards against the opponent. He is in addition arrogant.

    come out with a better list.

    • Kingkyrie

      Thuram and “Zidane” not up there? You are either blind or stupid, probably both. When talking about football nobody gives a shit about arrogance and character. Maybe Maradona shouldn’t be there, he was a bad bad boy,right? Anyway i ‘m sure you re the kind of guy who has wet dreams about Messi, so if Cristiano Ronaldo (or David Beckham,crap players according to you) is arrogant you are ignorant and completely brainless. The ball is round not square dummy…

  • Muttley

    Hey there Daniel – gotta agree with Eusebio and George Best (even though the latter was a bit of a twat) – and being a passionate Liverpool supporter I certainly cannot disagree with Stevie Gerrard's inclusion on YOUR list.

    However – points of disagreement – Critiano Ronaldo has just been voted World Player of the Year by FIFA and he's still just a kid – the boy will only gert bigger and better. Beckham must be included if only for his ability to turn a game from a dead ball. He is still one of only (probably) 2 or 3 players who can inspire fear in ANY 'keeper if he is lining up a spot-kick from anything less than 30 yards – and even outside that – he's bloody dangerous. Until the last couple of years there was still nobody on the planet who could control a ball through the air with such pinpoint accuracy and power – and it's not that someone else has got better than him; he has simply slipped as age erodes his power (if not his accuracy).

    Baggio is VERY good; but I still think Totti is better – and very very very under-rated. As for Buffon – he's certainly one of the greatest, but in their day, Gordon Banks and Peter Bonetti were as good if not better (Bonetti was known simply as 'the cat' due to his lightning fast reflexes). Then you have to look at Peter Schmiechel, Petr Czec, Pepe Reiner, Jersey Dudek and a 'keeper who exceptionally respected – especially facing penalties – is Australia's Mark Schwartzer: between them any one of Shwartzer, Reiner and Dudek – along with Buffon are probably the four 'keepers you would WANT in your goal in a penalty shoot-out.

    However field players who probably could have been more than justifiably included are:
    Sir Stanley Matthews – ?Stoke City: he reinvented the
    art of dribbling and was
    virtually untouchable with the
    ball at his feet and minimal room
    to move in.
    Sir Bobby Charlton – Man U
    Denis Law – also of Man U
    Henrik Larssen – Glasgow Celtic and Sweden
    Ronaldinho – FC Barcelona and Brazil
    Kaka – Brazil and ?AC Milan

    Hell, man you may as well include most of the Brazilians who played in the last few World Cup campaigns – if not all Brazilians who played in World Cup campaigns!!!!!!

    only MHO – feel free to cut it to pieces!

    • andi

      of course cristiano ronaldo

      • jofranpad

        Zidane, Pele, Maradona, Best, Ronaldo(brazil), Zico, Ronaldinho(a stretch i know). Ok so this may be a best of era type of list but these names come to mind when dominating their eras

  • MJA


    Petr Cech!?

    Oh, the shame :P

    Good list though, great game!!

    • Marshall Ingham

      PETR CECH????? WHAT ARE YOU THINKING!?!?!?! and no this is a terrible list. how can you justify alvaro recoba and david beckham being in the top 20 footballers of all time?

    • Cristi

      George Best, motherfuckerz

      • RikHard

        Eusebio, Best, …..
        Cristiano Ronaldo, Messi, … if you want new ones.
        This list sucks!

        • Jordan

          Eusebio, great shout! He was amazing. Petr Cech is an awful keeper can’t believe he was suggested, hes not even in the top 5 premiership goalkeepers let alone top20 ever

  • Leinad

    OMG… WTF!!!!!!!!!

    that’s all i can really say right now. give4 me a chance and i’ll make this list right, like it should…

    man… really… how badly it does suck indeed….

  • chandramouli

    @7raul7:Do you really watch football?

    You have put Cristiano Ronaldo’s photo instead of Brazilian Ronaldo.

    • FutbolLove

      Portugal Ronaldo is better than the Brazilian Ronaldo….what are you nuts????? I will answer for you "Yes, yes I am" LOL

      Cristiano still has years so maybe in the future you can….but not right now.

      Cristiano has not dominated World Cup play like Ronaldo from Brazil and thats the biggest stage, the biggest players NEED to make their mark there as well.

        watch this, ronaldo best attacker in the whole history of football

      • lukewright

        couldnt agree more m8 brazilian ronaldo is fucking miles better and what the fuck that list is a bit shit to be fair. messi should be in their althogh he has so much more to offer, i agree with a few on the list like zidane, ronaldo and maradona and to be honest peter schmeical was a better goalkeeper then oliver kahn.

        • JUANN


      • elixir

        [email protected]@@ u! ronallo of brazil is much much better of c. ronaldo!!what are u a retard?

    • shalev

      u reatrded? cristiano ronaldo is nothing..has he ever won worldcup? i dont thinks so..real ronaldo from brazil actually achieved many things

    • cezar77

      get fuked brazilian ronaldo shits on c.ronaldo in fact he shits on every1 in that list!

      • Jordan

        Brazillian Ronaldo was absolutely amazing in his day definately should be on the list

  • Tristan Werbowy

    Pele … no.2?? CMON!?!?

    and Lillian Thuram? Who? Although I’m sure his mother agrees.

    Possible Ommisions:

    Steven Gerrard
    George Best

    • skater777

      Gerrard :D :D :D Not in top 20 ! But u have to put in Eusebio , George Best , Lothar Matheus … !! And Recoba ? :D :D :D Not !! And my top 5 would be ! 1. Pele 2. Maradona 3. Beckenbauer 4. Cruyff 5. Zidane !!

      • Jordan

        Skater777 couldn’t agree more! Thuram was incredible, he deserves to be on this list

  • geronimo

    zizou before pele???????? SACRILEGE!!!!!!!!

  • hill

    Wrong ronaldo in the picture

    • lukewright

      no chance brazilian ronaldo is miles better, that cristiano ronaldo is a bellend and is never guna reach his standards

  • rocco

    ^ gotta love comments like Leinad’s…

    interesting that “the greatest soccer player in the history of the game” is not on #1 spot ;-)

    and David Beckham isn’t that good a player, England had (and has) far better ones… George Best or Kevin Keegan, eg

    • Clarky

      George Best wasnt English.

  • knight_forked

    Nice compilation! Ruud Gullit of Holland could have been in the notables list. Number one spot could be disputed since as far as sheer talent is concerned I would say Maradona was amongst the most talented.

  • Copaface

    George Best?
    I know he packed his liver in but he was a good player.

    Good list though

  • SSDD

    Gearoge Best? Steven Gerrad?

  • SSDD

    George I mean….

    AND you have the wrong ronaldo on the pic….

    • harry

      what the fuck
      u say that wrong ronaldo..?

      ur mom must be a cock of cristiano ronaldo

  • Znoober

    Thuram?! Ha!

    As for Roberto Carlos – everyone thought he was fantastic because he was ‘so good’ at free kicks. He got that one decent one against France, but other than that, his goal percentage from direct free kicks really wasn’t that great. And he was terrible defender. Which is a bit of a drawback for a left back!

    Definitely agree with Lev Yashin; he was probably the greatest keeper of all the time. But in second place is Peter Schmeichel, not Oliver Kahn!

    There should surely be room for George Best and Bobby Charlton too?

    (I think this was always going to be a pretty controversial list!)

  • Iain

    Rocco – you have a good point – but – George Best played for Northern Ireland internationally.

  • Kalyan

    This is the first disappointing list in a long time. No way Zidane was better than Pele or Maradona. Also, the list is very biased towards current players.

    I suggest you make a list for every decade – The best footballers of the 1960s, 1970s, 1980s, 1990s, 2000s – that will be less controversial but more useful

  • Aaron

    Dixie Dean. Where the hell is Dixie Dean? Top English goalscorer of all time with his record unlikely to ever be broken.

  • wicket18

    I great list..though I would put Pele first. Why? Mainly b/c he was probably the first player to bring attention to the sport in countries where it wasn’t popular, allowing the players of today to be soo popular

  • kerne

    With his 2 two goals last wednesday in the champions league match Real Madrid vs Zenith (3-0), Raul has become the top scorer ever in UEFA competitions, beating Inzaghi (66 goals for 64 of the italian).

    Some names I’m missing in that list: Messi, Gento (6 european cups with Real Madrid, a record), Laudrup, Kubala, Gerrard, Casillas…

  • anton3s

    You still have a picture of the wrong Ronaldo.

  • Znoober

    This is the Ronaldo you want:

    Not that poncey, over-acting, cheating, diving scum that you have a picture of at the moment.

  • Jaz_3

    dude,1st of all wrong ronaldo in the picture…


    u didnt put

    1)Cristiano Ronaldo
    2)Wayne Rooney
    4)Stevie G
    5)John Terry
    6)Nemanja Vidic
    7)Rio Ferdinand
    8)Edwin Van Der Sar
    9)Petr Cech
    10)George Best

    and one more thing…


    • Raftor

      With the exception of number 10 none of them are anywhere near the top 20 of all time

      • xvccccccc

        fuck u mate 1 messi
        roado 2 u fat fucking cunt i had sex with your mum today and u shit head

    • lee

      dude do u actually watch football??? out of that list there is only george best who should be on the list and maybe ronaldinho. you must be very young or not have been following football long if you think that any of the others like gerrard and rooney can compare to the likes of ronaldo (brazil), zidane, cruyff, zico or yashin. these players are all time greats whereas the players you mentioned are good nowadays and i think most of them would get into the top 100 players of all time except van der sar and cech.

    • SpursFan

      Really, Jaz. Only one of those players has won a world cup. Plus you include all the overrated EPL stars that do nothing internationally. Out of the ten only Best and Dinho are close to the list. Ronaldo/Rooney maybe later on but certainly not in there early 20's and Messi is likely to be better than them yet you exclude him . Why do people keep mentioning Gerrard? There would be so many English players ahead of him like Gazza and Charlton. Terry- PK miss, inconsistent, scandalous. Vidic- One great year makes him top 20 of all-time? Rio- Good defender but if Maldini and Baresi aren't making it he does not have a shot. Van der Sar- Never was as good as Buffon and Casillas who fail to make it. Cech- Same as Van der Sar.

      • lukewright

        yeah spot on their mate your probably 1 out of about 2 or 3 people that actually knows what their talking about on this comments list.

    • ElNino

      You look a Manchester United fan.
      You dont win any trophies and go about saying your players are the best ?

      Rooney ? Did he touch the ball this WC ?
      Ferdinand ? Van Der Sar ? They may make it to best 20 in EPL ? But of all time … who are you kidding mate ?

  • notherguitar

    yea dude i don’t even like soccer and i know you have the wrong Ronaldo. Just kidding. I feel sorry for you having to make this list. Any one who makes a list about sports or religon up here is going to be riped a new one. You have large testicles my friend for doing this

  • atulajith

    @jfrater: wrong ronaldo in picture… u r talking about brazils ronaldo… picturised is cristiano ronaldo…

  • atulajith

    btw… awesome list…

  • Znoober

    Re Jaz_3: The players you listed are all great players, but do you really believe they can be counted in the top 20 players of all time, alongside the likes of Pele and Cruyff? I wouldn’t even say Rio Ferdinand is one of the best 20 players of this decade, let alone of all time!

  • Rob Yorkshire

    Worst list I’ve ever seen on this site. George Best, Van Basten, Eusibo, Puskas, Bobby Charlton, Bobby Moore, Gianfranco Zola, Dennis Bergkamp, Dino Zoff, the list goes on. The inclusion of the vastly overrated Beckham is a joke. He wouldn’t get in a list of top 20 current best players, top 20 man united players or top 20 England players of all time. Ridiculous.

    • joe

      gianfranco zola???? are a joke

  • astraya

    Ummm, no (north) Americans?

    Seriously, Pele at no 2???? (I know people have said that already, but it needs to be said several times more)
    Too slanted towards recent players, but how do you measure players from different eras anyway?

    As Sir Humphrey might say “Courageous decision, minister”. Prepare for flak over this one!

    • abel

      north americans suck at futbol



  • Nicowarrior

    Maradona Good, Pele Great, George BEST

    George Best ” Pele said I was the greatest player he ever saw and that’s good enough for me”

  • Nicowarrior

    Also I agree with Rob Yorkshire about the Beckham comments.
    I am a Manutd fan but wouldn’t have him on my list of top 20 players, well maybe just but he is too 1 dimensional to be discussed in the same breath as some of these legends.

  • Lilz

    What about Eusebio? Often considered the european pele, huge oversee on this one..

  • bokkema

    Great list, especially for an American :)

    Two Dutch soccer players (Koeman, Cruyff), but where is Marco van Basten and Dennis Bergkamp?

    Most famous Koeman goal:

    Most famous Cruyff penalty:

    Most famous Van Basten goal:

    Most famous Bergkamp goal: (with insane Dutch commentator)

  • Daithi

    Whoever said Gerard is having a laugh? He wouldn’t make a top ten players today let alone ever.

  • Rob Yorkshire

    Thank you, Don’t get me wrong, I like Beckham as a bloke to be honest, But he can’t head or tackle, he doesn’t score very often from open play, he has no left foot and most damning of all he is a winger who can’t beat a man.

  • cubicdome

    Beckham as a top footballer?? Top money maker yes, footballer no.

    Recoba? Spent more time injured and playing lackluster ga,es than anyone at Inter Milan. Always hyped to be the next best thing but always below expectations except for some moments of sheer class.

    Ronaldo? Wrong picture first of all.

    Lilian Thuram? Good defender but not much else.

    What about Roberto Baggio, Franco Baresi, Alex Del Piero?

    • claudiocrz-

      there is no way that you put alvaro recoba roberto carlos and oliver khan and not put roberto baggio

  • Chilen0

    Zidane before Pele and Maradona!!! come oooon thats embarassing. And having Raul on the list who sucks. Where is Garrincha, Eusebio, Romario. Putting Beckham on the list just made me cry, he is one of the most overrated players in the game.

  • Jaz_3

    RE~Znoober=o yea i totally 4got about the ALL TIME things…hehe


  • KDR

    I think you better change the picture of C. Ronaldo and put the REAL Ronaldo!

    … I’m curious, where’s Romario? Bebeto

  • MT

    Where is Jim Brown? Johnny Unitas? Dan Marino? Who are these people?

  • McSquida

    Still no action on the Ronaldo picture front….

    I love the actual topic of the list, but I really don’t agree with the list. At the very least Zidane’s World Cup brain-fade-headbutt-incident should drop him well down the list. But even without that, he’s definitely nowhere near #1, despite what some FIFA online poll may have indicated.

    So many quality players missing… and so many like Beckham and Thuram that wouldn’t even make a top 50.

    Jaz_3 – I can’t agree with your list either. Very biased towards the EPL. Cristiano Ronaldo is probably the footballer with the most raw talent of anyone I’ve ever seen but he still has a long way to go to be the best ever. The inclusion of Vidic on your list tells us all who you support, since no other follower of football would have him anywhere near the top 100, let alone top 20 or 30.

  • Baxter

    Great list. I think this is one of those subjects that we can debate endlessly… and that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
    I would argue the case against Zizou being the best player of all time, not just because he simply isn’t as skilled as many others (including current players – John Terry anyone?), but also because his shameful performance against Italy cost France the 2006 world cup. Singlehandedly losing his country sport’s greatest honour on what should have been the greatest day of his life? I would say he forfeited his place.

  • Baxter

    “Ummm, no (north) Americans?”
    Please, PLEASE tell me that that was a joke!

  • postman

    George Best and Paul Gasgoine should be on the list and at the top and Pat Jennings or Roberto Baggio or even Roy Keane.

    I love these lists of peoples opinions because as the saying goes ‘Opinions are like arseholes………..everybody has one’.

  • postman

    Where is Jim Brown? Johnny Unitas? Dan Marino? Who are these people?

    Those people only played rugby but with the benefit of massive amounts of body armour. Proper football is played with the feet, hence the name.

  • astraya

    Baxter @ 46: It was a joke!

  • Freddy

    To be truly great you must also acheive. And sadly George Best never played in the world cup so is incomparable to Beckenbauer, Platini, Maradonna and Pele.

    Nice to try and include defenders.

    I’d like to suggest Baggio, an amazing club player and a man who dragged Italy (as a substitute) to the world cup final only to miss the penalty.

    And lets leave the silly suggestions (Rooney, C Ronaldo, Messi) of current players out of it.

  • Castor

    The guy in Ronaldo’s pick is Cristiano Ronaldo, a portuguese superstar. Brazil’s Ronaldo is alltogether a different guy…

  • jim

    plain stupid to be honest.

    no credit to the idiot author – how was this load of junk published?

  • ronsantohof

    I don’t know much about this communist football that the rest of the world plays; but I do know that David Beckham is over-rated.

  • Borka

    I`ll try to explain something here.

    I see u people are screaming for more old names,most of u never seen their games…

    Also interesting thing,i see that u ask only for popular players of their time and that would mean Attackers and Attacking-Midfield.

    Lillian Thuram is one of the best Defenders if not the best in whole football history+ he is only football player that is memeber of MENSA :D.

    I agree that ZiZu should be no.1,u that say what he did against italy 2006 puts him lower on list is pure rubbish,look what Maradona did trough his entire carrier and…wow he is still the man,and i agree with that.

    Others that say there are people who played better then ZiZu,well i say more research. xD

  • Daniel

    what do you think about leaving out Roberto Baggio and Gigi Buffon, respectively best Italian player of all time and best GK of Italy and maybe of the world?
    I do not mean to offend anyone, but all matters concerning football (aargghh soccer)can hardly be discussed by an American…
    Same an european talking about baseball…

    Anyway, my list would include

    – Roberto Baggio
    – Gigi Buffon
    – George Best
    – Marco Van Basten
    – Ferenc Puskas (how could you forget it!!!)
    – Eusebio
    – Garrincha
    – Steve Gerrard
    – Paolo Maldini

    cristiano ronaldo and beckham are defintely overvaluated..extraordinary skills and talent but need far more to be immortal champions

    ah, forgot: the best above all are Oliver Hatton and Benjii Price….

    • lee

      gerrard rofl i hope that one was a joke

    • star

      u also a joke!!!gerald??? how? cmon rem during bagios tym there ws this guy brazilian RONALDO who happens t be the best scorer of all time hw can u leave him out!!!surely!!

  • Chris

    I have no idea how David Beckham, Raul and Recoba can make a list that doesn’t have room Puskas, Van Basten or Baggio.
    Rob Yorkshire is spot on with his comment.

  • dan231

    I’m not sure if it was mentioned yet, but wrong Ronaldo in picture.


  • Jim C

    Nice cut & paste job.

    Cut & pasted quotation: “Pele was the greatest soccer player in the history of the game”

    Actual rank – number 2.

    Nice editing, there, Lou.

  • Internazionale supporter

    As an Internazionale F.C. supporter I would ban Recoba from football memory..
    I saw him live when he first came to Italy, unknown and very young, more than 10 years ago, and I was shocked by the beauty of his left foot: never seen anything like that. During his career in Internazionale he did single wonderful magics, but mostly it was a frustrating agony to wait for him to become mature and a leader capable of deciding matches.
    He missed every single occasion he had to prove his value…
    Every year, at the beginning of the season he was the most awaited player, and every year he was a complete failure..
    After 15 years of burning deceptions and multimillionaire contracts, shame on you Alvaro, out of my sight!
    If he only had had 1/100 of the mental strength of guys like Gerrard, he would have been in the top 10 of all time..

    A deceived Inter supporter

  • flgh

    No Cantona?
    Another FAIL list



  • LordCalvert

    And now for the REAL list of greatest FOOTBALL players of all time. No particular order.

    Jim Brown
    Jerry Rice
    Joe Montana
    Lawrence Taylor
    Johnny Unitas
    Don Hutson
    Otto Graham
    Walter Payton
    Dick Butkus
    Bob Lilly
    Sammy Baugh
    Barry Sanders
    Deacon Jones
    Joe Greene
    Gino Marchetti
    Raymond Berry
    Bart Starr
    Willie Lanier
    Larry Wilson
    Terry Bradshaw
    Herb Adderley
    Steve Largent
    Jack Ham
    John Mackey
    Bill George
    John Elway
    Anthony Munoz
    Ray Nitschke
    Night Train Lane
    John Hannah
    Gale Sayers
    Reggie White
    Ronnie Lott
    Jim Parker
    Merlin Olsen
    O.J. Simpson
    Dan Marino
    Forrest Gregg
    Roger Staubach
    Jack Lambert
    Lance Alworth
    Marion Motley
    Earl Campbell
    Alan Page
    Bronko Nagurski
    Mel Blount
    Deion Sanders
    Eric Dickerson
    Sid Luckman
    Willie Brown

    • hgdashgfashf

      stupid american prik

  • astraya

    LordCalvert: Who?

  • Daniel

    Hello Muttley,
    Of course C.Ronaldo is a wonderful, incredible player, but IMHO he cannot yet have his place in a list of the 20 “top players in history”. First, as you say, he is too young, and he has time to demonstrate if he deserves the top 20. Maybe yes, but maybe not, I see today many young great players that easily loose themselves following fame and money instead of the ball… At the moment I see that Ronaldo does the better things when his team is doing well during the match, but when the match is going badly for his team (manchester or portugal), he tends to disappear, not being often capable of changing the match. And, as for the ballon d’or I don’t care much about it, would you include in the top 20 players like shevchenko, sammer, rivaldo etc…? Anyway, C.Ronaldo is a wonderful player, with all the possibility (and more) to enter in footbal history, we’ll see..
    As for Beckham, nothing to say about his unbelievable technique, but again the question is: is he a complete player, a leader? I if I remember him in the first part of his career I would say yes, but I think that the second part of his career is missing and that’s enough for me to leave him out of the list.
    As an Italian great lover of football, I can assure you that there is no competition between baggio and totti. You are perfectly right when saying that Totti is very under-rated. But this happens abroad mostly because his team, the Roma, has little visibility abroad. Not a good team in international competitions. Here in Italy Totti is considered a demi-god..but fine football experts do not even try to compare him to baggio.
    And consider that Baggio became Baggio with his permanent knee injuries and winning almost nothing.
    Peter Schmiechel, Petr Czec, Pepe Reiner, Jersey Dudek are (were) of course great keepers, but playing in premier ship I cannot follow their saves every sunday. Anyway I must say that, even like this, I would put Buffon over all…:)(even if his best skills are certainly not penalty kicks, but reflex saves)

    Agree with Charlton.
    As for Ronaldinho, I think almost the same that for C.Ronaldo. Kaka is almost ready to enter the top 20, we’ll see in few years what will be the final place he will reach.
    A mention for Gianfranco Zola, maybe not a top 20 but a wonderful player and person..

    of course everything in MHO too – feel free to cut it to pieces as well!

  • Nicolelodeon

    What about the women??? There are amazing women football players as well, not just men.

    • lukeyash

      Women obviously aren't as good as men, hence no women appear in a list of greatest ever footballers. infact my local sunday league team of men would probably beat the greatest womans team in the world, we'd simply be too strong and to quick.

  • bokkema

    @Nicolelodeon: oy rly? name a few then …



  • Quiana

    I don’t know anything about SOCCER, but I do know that Beckham is some sweet eye candy :)

  • Sugen

    LORDCALVERT: What names are these. You call it soccer and other people call it football. We are talking about soccer players and not American Football (though not played with the feet entirely) players

  • a fan

    wrong Ronaldo.

    @ americans the game is called FOOTBALL not SOCCER because the ball is kicked around with your FEET, got that?! Its not carried and thrown around with your hands. Get the damn logic?!!!

  • aymericone

    7-Van Basten
    8-Di Stefano
    10-Lev Yachin
    11-Georges Best

    • lucas

      maradona should be #1 …. and he is #1 but HE decided to share it with pele'

    • No Way

      Impossible to leave out the Italians. Roberto Baggio deserves a top 5 and either Maldini or Baresi would be a sure top ten.

    • vikram

      1- maradona before pele
      2- you left out baggio & garrincha. suggest remove van basten and add garrincha. baggio is a personal favourite of mine but don't know who he can replace to get in this list.
      3- good list. much better than the prignal and all the comments i've read so far.

  • aymericone

    I’m sorry Nicole, but nobody cares about women football players, it’s only the truth

  • Freddy

    [NOTE: The term “football” in Lordcalvert’s post refers to American football, not Football the more popular and widely recognised sport.]

    Dan Marino below O.J. Simpson, another travesty of a list ;-D

  • bucslim

    Thank you Lord Calvert for straightening these people out.

    As an American and avid sports fan all my life, I’ve got to admit I’ve paid little attention to this sort of football. The best example of this is that I’ve heard of Pele, Maradona and Becks, but I’ve never heard of anyone else on the list. So I was a bit stunned when you say Pele was the greatest soccer player of all time, then list someone else ahead of him. That’s like saying Muhammad Ali was the greatest boxer of all time, then list him at # 2 below Larry Holmes.

    My youngest plays soccer and she’s quite good at it, so I suppose I’ll have to pay more attention to the game. But my only experience with true soccer fans was the time I was staying in a Hotel in Manaus Brazil. I went to bed one night and was awakened at 3 am. I thought an earthquake or hurricane or some other natural disaster was happening. People were screaming at the top of their lungs while running up and down the halls. I poked my head out of my door to discover a mass of Brazilians reveling because their team had just scored the winning goal in a World Cup match. This celebration lasted for the rest of the night.

    With all due respect, and with all the sincerity, I see the passion and zeal, but I just don’t friggen get it.

    Yeah, I’m one of those dumb and arrogant Americans who, like Lord Calvert, think there’s only one definition of ‘football.’ I’m conditioned to think that when someone is lying on the field grabbing his knee that the player suffered a knee injury, not just faking it to get the opposition a penalty or a red card. I find it curious that the same player in soccer who was surely on his way to the hospital moments ago, is now running down the field at full speed.

    Fights? Yeah, occasionally you’ll see some drunken idiots in the stands go after each other, but at a soccer game, if a bad call is made or the other team scores, the fans stand a more than reasonable chance of getting maimed, crippled or bludgeoned within an inch of their life. Same goes for the referees.

    If you think I’m wrong or just another stupid American spouting off about things he knows nothing about (all true) just read the reaction to some of the things I’ve pointed out.

  • silvernano


  • tobbytoy

    Under Pele it says he was the best who footballer to ever play the game, but he is second on the list? Bit of a contradiction there don’t you think?

  • davewjb

    if you dont know who ronaldo is you havent got a clue

  • warrrreagl

    In the 7th grade, one of my classmates cut off the top half of his thumb in shop class at 8AM. At 1PM, he was back in PE and on the pitch playing soccer with us. I nominate him as the best footballer ever.

  • Thomas

    I agree with Zidane being number one.
    His final stunt in his last match was sad though

  • Awe man! i WAS SO DISAPPOINTRED to find out this was a soccer list. lol…

  • jimbob

    While I don’t fully agree with this list, it is nice to see a list dedicated to the real game of Futbol! I am an American who came very close to playing this game professionally, and there can be little argument that this is the difficult sport to play in the world. It amazes me that the popularity lacks in the U.S., this sport is not for the lazy or the unfit.

  • Janjao

    This list is one of the biggest FAILS of this site…
    You’ll never see Thuram on any top 100 list, neither Di Stéfano so misplaced…

  • robbiedigital

    Leaving George Best out of an all-time greatest football list is like excluding Michael Jordan or Magic Johnson from an all-time basketball list. Not even an honorable mention.

  • Pengi05

    Where are the women? Are there not women playing football in other countries? I am from the US and we have womens soccer here I am just wondering if there are any clubs for women overseas. I assumed there was. Maybe I will have to do some research. But this list appears to be sexually biased.

    • dan

      because boys are better than girls.. and yes womens football i big in europe and theres a womens world cup

  • La patada de cantona

    Pelé debuto con un pibe. Maradona is the greatest player football has ever seen and will see. Se nota que son ingleses, putos, la mano de dios no te la olvidas mas, pirata cagon! Te falta ponerlo a Veron que te regalo el partido. Zapatos.

  • Clemen

    Well I’m not gonna say anything that hasn’t been said, but I do want to join the choir and say that this could very well have been the worst list ever.

    -Baresi owned Thuram.
    -I don’t even think Roberto Carlos is the second best Brazilian defender (after Carlos Alberto), I would list Cafu above him for one.
    -David Beckham had some sublime passing skills back in his day (late 90’s) but started to go down hill as soon as he left Man. United
    -Schmeichel>Yashin>Buffon>Kahn IMO
    -Koeman scored a lot of goals but so did Rogerio Ceni, and that was a keeper. Should he be on the list as well then? I’d even rather have Passarella than Koeman since he won the World Cup twice.
    -I’d put Eusebio before Figo
    -Recoba… really? I could name 50 players to put above him.
    -Zidane should be lower

    I can see how you went for players who were extraordinary in some way, and not just excellent at what they are supposed to do, but you are gonna get a lot of heat for it (which you already have)

  • CARD






  • Sugen

    more honourable mentions

  • Cyn

    86. CARD
    please read the FAQ.

    let us all keep in mind this is not a sports arena and that posting in all caps is the same as shouting which online is considered rude. shouting maybe appropriate in a sports arena but not in comment section on a website.

    and any point made is more apt to be recieved if the commentor is more respectful of not only his topic but his audience.

  • Simons

    Soccer is dumb ;P

    • dan

      wot and baseball,basket ball and american football are the king of sports??? there is a reason no 1 out side of america play these shity sports. american football was made because they stole the idears from rugby and "soccer". how many ppl watched supperbowl?about 90mil. how many people watch the world cup final?about 300mil…says it all

  • Chris

    Shouldn’t this list be called “Top 20 Soccer Players”. I’m pretty sure if this was top football players it would include the likes of Brett Farve, Joe Namath, or Johnny Unitas.

    • lee

      FYI its only retarded americans who call it soccer. its called football because its a sport where we use our feet, i never really understood why american football is called football when you use your hands most of the time. can you imagine how annoying it would be if rugby was called english basketball.

    • dashty

      american football is gay

    • dan

      american football is for pussys. they need armor to play. wot a set of puffs. type in rugby player on google images and see how fucked up there face and ears are. not like your queer american football players who would shit themselfs if they had to play rugby

  • Chris

    I’m pretty sure if this list was about top football players, it would include people like Brett Farve and Joe Namath. This list should be called “Top 20 Soccer Players”.

  • Chris

    sorry for the double post

  • Znoober

    With regard to the lack of women in the list…

    There are women’s clubs abroard, but they are absolutely nowhere near the standard of men’s clubs. I’m not an expert, but I understand the quality of women’s football in America is probably the best in the world, and the men’s is certainly not the best in the world, thus making your female players comparable to your male players. But in other countries, certainly in the UK, the female players are amateurs and there is a huge gap between them and the world-class male players.

    I feel quite bad for the author of this list because this is such a tough topic to make a list on. There’s been bigger debates than this on just Pele v Maradona, let alone the greatest 20 players ever!

  • Sugen

    Chris @ 90: The is a matter of semantics and location. Because you have American Football, you get confused but I had no problem with it. I would rather have been disappointed if it had been what you had in mind. It is just as saying an ‘elevator’ and another person saying ‘lift’.

  • dan231

    Chris, soccer is soccer only in US, it is football pretty much everywhere else.

  • richiet


    1. Cristiano Ronaldo – Manchester United
    2. Kaka’ – AC Milan
    3. Peter Cech – Chelsea
    4. Lionel Messi – Barcelona
    5. Fernando Torres – Liverpool
    6. Wayne Rooney – Manchester United
    7. John Terry – Chelsea
    8. Iker Casillas – Real Madrid
    9. Gianluigi Buffon – Juventus
    10. Cesc Fabregas – Arsenal
    11. Frank Lampard – Chelsea
    12. Xavi – Barcelona
    13. David Villa – Valencia
    14. Didier Drogba – Chelsea
    15. Steven Gerrard – Liverpool
    16. Zlatan Ibrahimovic – Inter Milan
    17. Michael Essien – Chelsea
    18. Ruud Van Nistelrooy – Real Madrid
    19. Ronaldinho – AC Milan
    20. Jose Bosingwa – Chelsea

    honorable mentions: Nicolas Anelka – Chelsea, Eto’o – Barcelona, Emmanual Adebayor – Arsenal, Edwin Van Der Sar – Manchester United, Michael Ballack – Chelsea, Alessandro Del Piero – Juventus, Francesco Totti – Roma, Sergio Aguero – Atletico Madrid

    • asdd

      I think 20 best soccer players in the world are Messi Ronldo rooney Gerrard David Villa kaka Torres Ronldinho lampard alonso Drogba Xavi Fabregas Bechem Casillas Terry Heskey Tevez pepe

    • tyoly


    • dsj

      all of those players are great but they spacific place that u have put them in is wrong, for example, messi shuld b higher than ronaldo- u may disagree with this but wen u think about it, ronaldo only has a good right footed shot and foot skilles. he doesnt work for the ball and wen the he doesnt he yells at his players for it making them take the blame for everythign, he doesnt work. messi works his ass off, is capable of beating any defender in his way, and score at almost any angle, his shot may not b as fancy or his skills may not b top of the line but wen u can play like him u dopnt need to do tht. messi is the best.

  • ABrutalKind


  • The Dude

    well, i have no idea who any of these people are. i find mma vastly more entertaining than watchin someone kick a ball for 2 hours. however, im glad others seem to be enjoying it.

  • kiwiboi

    Oh dear…what a controversial topic! And, nobody is ever going to agree 100% with any list like this. And, some of the names there sure suprise me (ie. shouldn’t be there, IMHO)

    So, here’s a few of my own comments…

    Muttley : why do you say George Best was a “bit of a twat”? He was generous to a fault, and despite being treated as public property and constantly pestered for autographs etc, would take the time to sign them without a word of complaint. I met George on a number of occasions, as did my wife and son (he lived for a time in my village) and he was never anything but a gentleman. And this is a very widely held view, even from those who are not Man U supporters. The poor guy’s problems emanate from the fact that he was a hopeless alcoholic.

    And, regarding Mark Schwartzer, I have to disagree. He’s quality, but shouldn’t even be mentioned in any list of greats (unless it’s limited to Australian footballers). And I’m not being biased here, either – I’m a proud Fulham FC season-ticket holder and Schwartzer is (as you will know) the Fulham goalkeeper; whilst I’m immensely glad that he is, he doesn’t come close to being included as a great footballer.

    Some of my own favourite footballing greats…

    Pat Jennings
    George Best
    Johan Cruyff
    Diego Maradonna
    Marco van Basten
    Kenny Dalglish

    Amongst the wonderful players I’ve seen play live :

    Ruud Gullit
    Glenn Hoddle
    Derek Dougan
    Paolo diCanio
    Vincenzo Montella (when at Fulham)
    Gordon Banks

    (note, I’ve seen Beckham, Giggs, C Ronaldo etc., a number of times, but I wouldn’t class them amongst the “greats”).

    Most impressive footballers I’ve seen when I’ve been at the match :

    Nigel Clough
    Mark Hughes
    Paul Scholes

  • rshady

    A few overreactions in the comments above :D

    As for the guy who suggested Vidic and Van der Sar as notable ommissions from the list..oh dear :p

    Personally I think 20, 19 and 18 aren’t good enough to be on the list.

    Thuram had a few great moments for France, but he was never a defender I highly rated.

    Roberto Carlos had great pace and a lethal left foot, but is not a great defender.

    Beckham is the poster boy for those who aren’t really ‘into’ football, he was a great crosser of the ball and a genuinely decent player in his Man United and Real Madrid days, but definitely not one of the top 20 players ever.

    Recoba is the most baffling though, I can think of 50 more players more deserving on a place on the list then that.

    Otherwise a pretty sound list Imo, although you want to change that Ronaldo picture sharpish :D

  • courtney

    What about Freddy Adu and Mia Hamm?

  • zuro

    no no no no no no no no no no and no
    wtf, where is ronaldo, rivaldo, henry, vieri, del piero and many more
    no no no no no no no no NO NO NO

  • Tamugol

    What is this John (Comment Nª1)talking about “AMERICA” ….WE in the rest of the American continent call it FUTBOL!!!!!

  • downhighway61

    tamugol, I think he means the United States of America, or just America, for short ;)
    All the other countries in N and S America have real names.

  • Sugen

    somehow it works because of the use of ‘Active’. However, if it is in a descending order, I would not agree with you. Considering current form, Messi is the best.

    • TJE

      finally some one says lionel messi is the best b-cause he is!!!!! this is a retarded list

  • RandomPrecision

    Joe Montana? Jerry Rice? Tom Brady?

  • JOHNY!!


    where’s eusebio?! and garrincha?!

    also, pele is overrated. i won’t go deeper than this because i know most of you will skip my post after that statement.

    but yeah, some names of the list were well chosen. It’s a shame people forget about the great footbal players of the past, and a reminder is always nice.

  • charlimara

    “americans the game is called FOOTBALL not SOCCER because the ball is kicked around with your FEET, got that?! Its not carried and thrown around with your hands.”


  • Sugen

    106 Comments refer to richiet @ 96

  • josephebraul

    RONALDO’s PHOTO IS WRONG!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Zinedine better than Pele?!?!?!WTH

  • Tamugol

    Dear Charlimara….couldn`t be more clear….. you got a point…

  • kunle

    i cant believe what i’ve been reading in the past few minutes
    Top 20 football players of all time and no JJ OKOCHA, this is nothing but pure bull shit!
    Just watch these:

    You can find other clips yourself!

  • Miss Destiny

    I’ve never seen a list cause so much whining.

  • Krav

    LordCalvert I know you are talking about American Football(NFL) and you dont even include the current greats. emit smith, mike singultary, ray lewis, peyton manning, Brett favre, Ladanian tomlinson, steve young, Brian Urlacher, randy moss, richard dent, i can keep goin. As for the list at hand WRONG Ronaldo. Zidane first, Wrong again. Lillian Thuram? Whos this frenchie. Beckham seriously. Roberto carlos was good but not a great.

    Players to be considered: form brazil-rivaldo, cafu, Ronaldhino, Mario Zagallo, : England-George Best, Peter Shilton, Sir Bobby Charlton, Bobby Moore, :Argentina-Javier Zanetti, Gabriel Batistuta, Roberto Ayala, Hernán Crespo :Germany- (even though Kahn is deserving with his accomplishment) Sepp maier Great GK, Uli Hoeneß, Lothar Matthäus, Rudi Völler, Jurgen Klinnsman, Karl-Heinz Rummenigge :Hungary-ferenc Puskás, Sándor Kocsis, György Sárosi, : France-Just Fontaine, Thierry Henry :Czech- Old?ich Nejedlý :Italy-Paolo Rossi, Roberto Baggio :Holland- Marco Van Basten, Johnny Rep, :Peru- Teófilo Cubillas :Portugal-Pauleta :Romania-Gheorghe Hagi

    That is just to name a few for the ridiculous names that you have posted for some spots.

  • Yondofan12

    Poor List!Lilian Thuram?  Wrong picture of ronaldo?Where is George Best? Where is my guy DIRK KUYT?

  • schiesl

    This list is a total fail boat…..

  • schiesl

    that is the Correct Ronaldo, at least the one you are talking about


    You really put yourself in harms way with this list…1st off Christiano Ronaldo and Ronaldo both should be on the list separately. Where is Kaka? Zidane isn’t the best footballer of all time. No Liverpool players past or present? Beckham shouldn’t be included in the top 100 all time. George Best should have been included.

    And for all you people calling “americans” out for calling the game soccer, “soccer” is a British, look it up, its a shortening of “Association Football”. So before you go declaring ignorance, check your facts.

  • anOkaZz

    I’m Portuguese and now I’m just ofended. First, you put the photo of Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal) instead of puting the photo from Ronaldo (Brazil) but then that would mean that this list would not have Cristiano Ronaldo on it which just doesn’t make any sense. But then you did omit Eusébio, one of the best players ever (and also Portuguese), for sure in the top 5, among Pelé, Maradona and (maybe) Zidane.
    And wtf is Beckam on this list for?

    This list is just wrong.
    Please, just do lists about stuff that you know, don’t make up things, like the other day with the dexter/sylar non-sense…this stuff is just ruining the quality and credibility of this site.

  • Englandexpects

    why am i not on this list lol but other than that best should be on there otherwise good list

  • base

    il fenomeno??

    it’s not cristiano ronald that’s called that..
    it’s the other ronaldo!!!

  • base

    i agree only for the first btw :D

  • Cedestra

    67. Quiana: You and I and several people commenting are in the same boat. Even though I played soccer/futbol for several seasons, I have no clue who 15/20 people on this list are. I actually don’t think I’ve ever watched a full game of soccer. It just doesn’t interest me, like hockey and basketball. They’re boring and there’s no real team for me to root.
    Now, baseball and football are completely different. Go Red Sox! (And I don’t know who to root for for football anymore since the Patriots are idiots.)
    Anyway, looks like you’ve got your hands full, 7raul7.

  • 62. LordCalvert: Did you bother to read the description of the list at all?
    I quote: [NOTE: The term “football” in this post refers to Soccer, not American Football.] If you read it, and ignored it, this makes your post either a sad comment on your grasp of your importance in the larger scheme of things, or (sadder yet) a comment on your lack of ability to grasp the meaning of the above statement.
    If you did not read the preface to the list, the list itself should have made it clear that the subject was international football, *not* American football.

    ***7raul7: While some of the posters pointed out one image problem, and the problem of Pelé not being in the number 1 position, I congratulate you on a job well done. Football is a rabidly followed, and team supported, sport. Any list on the subject was bound to capture any number of complaints. In this case, I think that’s a good sign. It means people were paying attention (with the possible exception of LordCalvert).
    I always loved watching Pelé, and Ronaldo was a worthy successor.
    Weekend before last, I watched most of the game between Chelsea and Arsenal, but had to leave before games end. I’ve always preferred International Football to what other Americans call Football (a game I can neither follow, nor care to).
    Good for you!

  • Maccie

    Recoba! He couldn’t even hold down a regular first team place at Inter… He wouldn’t even make it into my top 100 list of great players from the last 5 years

    List is pretty goof aside from that although I’m sure that there are a few players that would fancy themselves ahead of Thuram

    I agree with the top three but in a different order:

    3. Zidane
    2. Pele
    1. Maradona

    (I’m Scottish by the way…)

  • SuperHero3

    Clearly! and I hope clearly, that picture of Christiano Ronaldo on this list is a mistake. The bio is for Brazilian Ronaldo. Maybe one day Christiano will be on this list but right now he has not done much of anything to be considered one of the top 20 greatest of all-time.

    Zidane #1, really? Top 5 ok but #1 over Pele and Maradona. I disagree a great deal. No Dino Zoff? No Paolo Maldini?

  • Clarkekentyboy

    For a start, David Beckham shouldn’t be anywhere near this list. Secondly, that’s the wrong Ronaldo and finally where is George Best?

  • NP666

    Never allow 7raul7 to ever I repeat EVER!!! To publish a football related list on this site again. Recoba??????? at 12.

    I’m going for a lay down in a dark room.

  • Carol

    Pengi05: Yes, there is a great women soccer team in Brazil, and I am a little upset they weren’t posted there, but this really is a man’s world.
    Sooo sad to see Pelé as second.

  • YaarghMaargh

    List invariably leave people out, but this is insane.

    What about:

    Roberto Baggio
    Gheorghe Hagi
    Marco Van Basten

    And Becks should be nowhere near this list. The man is popular, but one of the greatest of all time? Hell no!

  • Kafnut

    Nice try, but as many have pointes out before me, this list leaves out a fair number of legendary players (eg. Van Basten just to name one of them) and includes others with no merit whatsoever to appear on any list (David Beckham!!! Seriously?!?! He’s just the product of merchandising. England has had a lot of more talented players than him).

  • elartistamadridista

    Zidane is my idol, but I think Maradona should probably be above him.
    Raúl is the Champions League top scorer (has won 3), so anyone saying he doesn´t belong here better reconsider. As for Roberto Carlos, he is probably the best ever in his position, in his prime he was really astounding.
    I´ve never watched Pelé, but some consider him overrated, even no one denies that he was an extraordinary player.
    I agree Kaká, C. Ronaldo, Ronaldinho, Cech, Casillas, Messi or other current players should be left out, as only time will tell.
    I have serious doubts about Thuram and Beckham.
    Is a video list with the best goals (meaning both beautiful and in important games) in the making? Perhaps it´s too obvious (first one: Maradona against England) but I never get tired of them (specially Zidane´s masterpiece in the CL final).

  • Pwnstar

    Zidane above Pele?Being South American and having seen Zidane play, this is HERESY!

  • kiwiboi

    England-George Best

    Krav – George Best was Irish.


    kunle – Okocha is a very talented footballer. But he should not come anywhere near a list of greatest players of all time. He wouldn’t even make a top 20 of current Premiership players (in my opinion).

  • slopzang

    i think thats christiano rinaldo of portugal / man u. not rinaldo of brazil

  • Tereso

    I hate to say this because I absolutely love your site, but this is a AWFUL BAD list.
    It’s a bit unfair, when you make 1000 things right, and you get so much criticism for just 1 wrong, but please take my comments as consutructive criticism ;)
    Still love the site, and will visit again tomorrow for more great stuff!!!!!

  • shaun

    this is a joke, right? You’re trying to win an award for most comments, correct?

    It’s hard to even know where to get started with where this list is wrong – i understand that lists like this are subjective, but just consider the inclusion of Beckham, who was the least talented of Man United’s vintage midfield of Giggs, Scholes and Keane, all of whom have more medals than him.

  • scott

    Pele good, Maradona better, George Best…

  • LordCalvert

    wow, did i stir up a bit of a hornets nest or what with my little comment about real football!

    of couse i know the list is about soccer, i just like to pick on the folks that think soccer is the greatest thing since sliced bread.

  • YogiBarrister

    This list is too American! :)

  • LkN

    Ronaldo in the picture = Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal)
    Ronaldo in the text = Ronaldo (Brazil)

    Garrincha is definitely missing, he is known as the lonely star and even Pele recognizes him as the greatest player in history rather than himself… And if you get to watch any Pele interviews, you will notice that Pele is very selfish… So if he recommended Garrincha, that guy must have something… Garrincha was also physically disabled (one of his legs was about 3 inches shorter than the other), he died alone, poor and drunk as one of the saddest stories I’ve ever heard of.

    Socrates is also missing. His story is not very well known by most people but he is one of the few soccer players to get a degree. Specially considering that he is from Brazil, that makes him very very notable. More than that, he graduated from the best university in Brazil, becoming a physician while playing for the Brazilian squad in the world cup. Nonetheless, he was also one of the best (if not THE best) game-setters of all times. He had such an amazing view of the game that he was able to tell where every one on the field was without actually looking, which lead him to provide extremely well-marked passes.

    Google/Wikipedia them and you will understand what I’m trying to show.

  • robby57


    where is kaka??

    didn’t like this list, you missed off some great heros :(

  • ericdraven26

    are all of you asking if this should be top 20 “soccer” players idiots?

    no offence, but I’m an american, born, raised, not interested in soccer at all, but even i know that soccer is more commonly called football throughout the world, where as american football is generally known as “american football” throughout the world

  • jeff

    That’s the wrong ronaldo. Cristiano Ronaldo (who’s picture was shown) is from Portugal and plays for Manchester United.

  • dustin

    this is attrocious. beckam does not deserve to be on the list. pele and maradona are one and two hands down. where is van basten? Raul SHOULD NOT BE ON THIS LIST

  • aspyr


  • bigski

    I don`t know much about “football” being from the U.S, but why is there only 1 guy from an English speaking country ? Don`t N.Z ,Australia,Canada,U.K or dare I say the U.S have any top 20 players ? Im speechless !

  • psychosurfer

    Haven´t read through the posts but based on the list I guess you are really having a hard time Raúl.
    I gather you are Spanish from the inclusion of Raúl González which shouldn´t be on this list, but he´s just a minor error considering that you mention Beckham (possibly the most overrated player in history), Oliver Kahn, Recoba, Figo and Thuram all of them good players but far, Very far from legends of the sport such as Puskas, Van Basten, Cantona, Eusebio, etc., etc.).
    Sorry, I appreciate the effort, but I think there´s very little research behind this.
    One of the weakest lists I have seen.

  • dustin

    I must say ive seen alot of top football player lists, and yours is one of the more comical..

    this list should be

    1. pele (came up huge in multiple world cups)
    2. maradona (had the best world cup of all time)
    3. ronaldo (an unstoppable attacking force)
    4. cruyff (the best european player)
    5. beckenbaur (revolutionized the role of attacking defender)
    6. yashin (best goaltender ever)
    7. Best (could have had a greater career, but threw it away)
    8. Zidane (truely a force to be reconned with)
    9. maldini (best pure defender, ever)
    10. di stephano (the greatest real madrid player, LMAO Raul)
    11. Van Basten (could be higher up but career was cut short)
    12. Puskas (one of the greatest hitmen)
    13. eusabio (the best from portugal, not CR)
    14. ronaldinho (magical when at his best)
    15. Charlton (overrated, but still a great)
    16. Mathews (The first great star)
    17. Baggio (the quintessential italian footballer)
    18. henry (the greatest modern premiership player)
    19. roberto carlos (one of the best attacking defenders)
    20. kaka (one of the best champions leagues ever)

    honerable mentions: zico, rivaldo, platini, mathews, gullit, mathaus, cristianaldo ronaldo (CR), messi

    • ike

      this is my list

      1. maradona (had the best world cup of all time)
      2. pele (came up huge in multiple world cups)
      3. ronaldo (an unstoppable attacking force)
      4. cruyff (the best european player)
      5. beckenbaur (revolutionized the role of attacking defender)
      6. Zidane (truely a force to be reconned with)
      7. ronaldinho (magical when at his best)
      8. romario
      9 yashin (best goaltender ever)
      8. Abedi Ayew Pele (Ghana, arguably the best african player ever)
      9. maldini (best pure defender, ever)
      10. di stephano (the greatest real madrid player, LMAO Raul)
      11. Van Basten (could be higher up but career was cut short)
      12. Puskas (one of the greatest hitmen)
      13. eusabio (the best from portugal, not CR)
      14. galenchia (brazil)
      15. Charlton (overrated, but still a great)
      16. Xabi (barca, the best passer of the ball)
      17. Baggio (the quintessential italian footballer)
      18. Rivaldo (an incredible skills)
      19. roberto carlos (one of the best attacking defenders)
      20. kaka (one of the best champions leagues ever)

      pls never mention the name of Beckham when u mention best footballers, he is not even a good footballer n he cannot even be mentioned as 100 best the EPL has ever had

  • Ruairi

    @ 148 Bigski

    While NZ and Canada and the US im sure have some great players, I doubt any would make a top 20 (or 50) list anywhere! And there is a UK inclusion in the list with David Beckham. Australia has some great players, but New Zealand are better at rugby, shall we say!

  • Ben

    Zidane certainly deserves top 20, but under no circumstances does he deserve #1.

  • Fer

    Maradona is 3°!!!!! Are you Crazy????

  • postman

    This is just a list of someones personal opinions and for all those who think they could do better, well maybe they should submit their own lists. It’s fine to put up what you think has been missed but all these posts about ‘This site is ruined’ and ‘This site has lost a credibility’ should remember that this site is run by one person in his spare time (along with a number of mods.) and that he could just ‘shut up shop’ if it became too much.
    Rant over.
    135. kiwiboi
    And George Best is from Northern Ireland which makes him British not Irish.

  • Clo3o5

    Pele in front of maradona and pele? i dont think so….and no ronaldinho but cristiano ronaldo and lilian thuram? are you serious?

  • Paulb

    Zidane #1?

    no, maybe top 10 or even top 5 but not 1. Thats Pele’s spot.
    and wrong Ronaldo. you probably meant Ronaldo from the brazil team wheres he? or even Ronaldhino?

    you put beckham up but you don’t put Wayne Rooney?

  • jogiff

    I just want to say that I think that soccer is the most boring (real) sport to watch. American football on the other hand, is a strategic sport. It was invented by and for Ivy League college students as a simulation of war. In soccer, physical ability is far more important than intelligence.

    Also: stop killing each other over a (stupid) game.

  • dustin

    also, under pele you have “he was the greatest soccer player in the history of the game” and have him at #2? cant make up your mind?

  • Paulb

    btw, i like the list. im not bashing, just wondering where my man Rooney went.

  • Toni_M

    haha when i first read the title i was like “better not be beckham” hahah but yea i woulda thought Pele=1 maradona=2
    Zidane is awesome but not as awesome as them! but then thats what i think ;)

  • llninja

    This list is so poorly put together it’s just hilarious. Besides the total flub with Ronaldo’s picture, there are all kinds of spelling errors. And of course, more than a few notable omissions make it just laughable. Eusebio? John Charles? Ruud Gullit (joke as a manager – great player!). Stevie Gerrard? Marco Van Basten? BOBBY CHARLTON? GEORGIE BEST? And then GENTILE gets honorable mention? Wow. I’m so annoyed I might have to start drinking early.

    (Oh by the way – In America you call it whatever the hell you want. The rest of the world is CLEARLY wrong on this one.)

  • Toni_M

    and i woulda included Edgar davids… hes awesome :P

  • Lord Calvert is an ass

    Lord Calvert

    You sound like a redneck married to your sister and living on a farm in some American countryside. Please be ignorant elsewhere you dumb retard.

  • Maggot

    #107 RandomPrecision: Joe Montana? Jerry Rice? Tom Brady?

    Tom Brady isn’t good enough to carry Joe Montana’s jock-strap. Nor are any of the other “wankers” on this list.

    Well ok, maybe Pele. :-)

  • cristiano007

    Please, never go to Brazil or Argentina, you’re dead man there. Zidane better than Platini? Not even Zidane’s mother would agree… Very good list as a joke…hahaha

  • bajumba

    158: Jogiff

    People who dont really follow or properly observe a particular sport believe that sport has no strategy at all. Futbol, like every other sport, involves tons of strategy and exploting weaknesses of other teams. Watch the spanish league and you will know what I am talking about. The 3-1 defeat of giants Real Madrid by minnows Getafe is a recent example. You may have watched a couple of futbol games but not properly enough.

  • llninja

    Lord Calvert
    ‘Football’ as you call it, is a sport for those that feel the need to hide behind a lot of padding. Anybody that thinks that ‘soccer’ is a game that doesn’t require intelligence and strategy as well as athletecism just isn’t very good at it. Most American football fans can’t even run for 90 minutes, let alone run and do something constructively athletic for that period of time. Maybe it’s an attention span thing.

  • RJ

    No one is ever going to agree on a list like this.

    But this list is so far off being anywhere near right it is unbelievable.

    7Raul7 is obviously a Spaniard and a Real fan.(who doesn’t watch much footie)

    At least 8 people in his list should not be anywhere near a top 20 list. 3 or 4 of them shouldn’t be anywhere near a top 100 list.

    This is virtually as pointless as the lists on;

  • bajumba

    Yeah there are tooooo many legends in this sport for everyone to agree on a top 20

  • alex

    …and then we must ask ourselves the question, “Who really cares?”

  • kiwiboi

    And George Best is from Northern Ireland which makes him British not Irish.

    postman – don’t be so pedantic. Welshmen, Scots and English are also British…but it doesn’t stop them being Welsh, Scottish or English.

  • Tatun

    Recoba?! Figo?! And what about Ronaldo and Ronaldinho?

    Come on, better post nothing than a personal list, like this one, that totally sucks

  • thematic

    Achieved nothing to merit being on a list like this.

  • cwizz

    pretty great list…so many potential players to chose from

    picture of Ronaldo is a picture of Cristiano Ronaldo

  • kiwiboi

    Oh…and here’s the greatest goal ever scored :

  • bigski

    kiwiboi- After watching that clip I am now a big fan !!

  • alexb.

    wow Beckhman and Recoba over BAGGIO, RIVERA, RIJKAARD, and the all time great BARESI!! what a joke.

  • Bytedragon

    I really like that you tried to include some defenders on the list. They don´t get that much attention. It´s a list of best players, not most famous.

    It´s hard to say how good many of the old players like Pele and Maradona would do in a modern football match. I don´t think it´s that outrageous to put Zidane first. He was a far better playmaker than Pele or Maradona, though Maradona and Pele were better dribblers and better in the Box.

    Raul, Roberto Carlos and Beckam shouldn´t be on the list. Best, Eusebio, and Puskas should.

  • Mr. Plow

    LordCalvert you are now my favorite poster on LV!!!!

    successful troll is successful!!! My hats off to you good sir…clearly we are posting in an epic bread.

    llninja…Settle down. The guy was making a joke. And you clearly have no idea what happens on an American football field. You know why they have pads? Because people friggen died playing this game back in the days before pads and helmets. American football is not a game for the weak.

    And as one of those who watches AmFootball, I am almost positive I could out run you for 90 seconds.

    All sports have their skill sets and points of excitement…to about it all is kinda pointless. Besides, everyone knows the toughest sport out there is hockey!!!

  • Ash

    wrong ronaldo in the picture…the one pictured does not deserve the title of one of the greatest in the world!
    Best, Henry, Kaka and Ronaldinho should’ve got a mention!

  • jim

    zidane > pele and maradona = Tragedy. This list need some serious revision. All due respect I wonder whether ur a fan of soccer or whether u just did “research” for the sake of this list? Like the guy who said beckham has done nothing to merit his inclusion this list – u guys clearly have no concept wat classifies as a great football player. Sad..

  • Ash

    Robinho and Messi also…but I’m sorta young so can’t say much about the older players, so you could be right.

  • Leinad

    OK. I HAD to do this. I really still can’t believe the list they came up with here, so i had to make one of my own, as a south american football lover, as i have been all my life. I seen, lived, breathed, cried and played football since i can remember, and so, this is the list i could come up with after thinking thoroughly of all the great players i’ve known in one way or another.

    01. Maradona

    02. Pele

    03. DiStefano

    04. Cruyff

    05. Zidane

    06. Garrincha

    07. Ronaldo

    08. Zico

    09. Beckenbauer

    10. Platini

    11. Baggio

    12. Muller

    13. Van Basten

    14. Best

    15. Ronaldinho

    16. Charlton

    17. Valderrama

    18. Figo

    19. Henri

    20. Batistuta

    That’s it. probably not the 20 best in history, but this is what i can come up with right now. i hope you agree in most part.

  • jim

    I mean for goodness sakes, the fact that u have the WRONG RONALDO pictured on the list (huge blunder) pretty much confirms my suspicions that u have no real grasp on this subject. Cant really take this list seriously. Sorry to sound so ungrateful, but seriously dude.. no real football fan would make an error like that.

  • dole

    Soccer (not football) has to be the most boring sport in the world. Nonetheless I see many people not only watch it but actually know who the players are. I’ll take a good,ole’ American game of football anyday!

  • GTT

    “americans the game is called FOOTBALL not SOCCER because the ball is kicked around with your FEET, got that?! Its not carried and thrown around with your hands.” FABULOUS!

    And 166. bajumba: THANK YOU! It bugs me whenever I hear people (most often Americans) make comments like that.

    OK, I have to speak up for my fiance (I am sending him this link as we speak) because I think he will DIE with Maradona being at the number 3 spot. I can hardly believe it myself. You mentioned his drug issues and “the hand of God” (though not its importance) but where is the description of his sublime control of the ball, his mind-blowing creativity and natural talent? #3? Are you kidding me?!?

    Oh, and 170 comments later and the picture of Ronaldo is still not correct. CR may be eye-candy but the real Ronaldo deserves his correct picture (plus a sport higher up on the list).

    Also missing: Ronaldihno, Kaka, Messi (I know they are all relatively young but still incredibly talented).

  • Leinad

    i have to put a fellow peruvian as a bonus:

    Teofilo Cubillas

  • dole

    By the way, JFrater selects the photos to use, not the person writing the list.

  • Mr.Crow

    Got to agree with jim on this one. I agree that Zizou is number one, but someone who really knows football should have done this list. Please, just change the picture, it makes the entire list look like it was done by someone who has never watched professional soccer in their entire life. I hope that isn’t the case.

  • Mr.Crow

    Someone tell JFrater to change it then. It makes the guy who wrote the list look like an idiot.

  • lapatik

    This is Ronaldo from Portugal…

  • GTT

    179. Mr. Plow : 90 seconds MAYBE but a game of football lasts 90 minutes… Of continuous running… Try doing just 10 minutes with bursts of speed every 30 seconds and let us all know how you end up.

    And football isn´t about ¨tough¨. It´s about skill, finesse, intelligence and atheliticism.

  • Richard Beattie

    Alan Shearer:

    All time leading goalscorer for the EPL

    Won the ten seasons award.

    Named the best English player to play in the EPL and the best Overall player

    He moved to his home town club (Newcastle) despite Man U offering world record sums of money (they tried again when he was at Newcastle)

    He was not the most buetiful player, he was rough, tough, played with his heart and scored some amazing goals.

    One of hte most underrated players of all time. He was and is the anti Beckham – quite, proffesional, loyal and a mans man.

  • yaarghmaargh

    Kind of strange that I’m the only one who mentioned Zbigniew Boniek.

    For those that don’t know him, here are his three sublime goals in against belgium in the 1982 world cup:

  • Krav

    kiwiboi yes you are correct that George best was an Irishman born in belfast and died in london. When I wrote England I was putting all players from the UK under England because there arent that many legends worthy of naming for each counrty(scottland, whales, ireland, england), saved me time and energy. not to offend anyone of course. when it comes to players comming out of the UK none really accomplished much at all. England won the world cup in 1966 even though the ball didnt cross the end line. Germany throughout history has the best national team comming out of europe. Just try to argue that. Most final match apperances, most Euro titles, Three world cup titles. Three players scoring at least 10 world cup goals. Reaching at least the last eight in all world cup apperances. For all world cup final matches in history only 2006, 1978, 1938, 1934, 1930 didnt feature Germany or Brasil. The Majority of the players on this list should be from Brasil, Germany, and Italy. A spots for some others. I love debating and talking fussball. So wanna disscuss more bring it on

  • Krav

    Leinad i had already mentioned Teofilo Cubillas. and i like that someone agrees with me that he was amazing

  • koussy

    u mistaked christiano ronaldo with the real ronaldo

  • skidoos

    This list is shite. Where is Dennis Bergkamp? Where’s Thierry Henry? You’ve got the wrong Ronaldo. There’s no Ronaldinho or Kaka. Recoba over Figo??

  • Maggot

    #192 GTT: And football isn´t about ¨tough¨. It´s about skill, finesse, intelligence and atheliticism.

    American football also requires those skill-sets that you list, in varying degrees. AND toughness.

  • Lostagent

    Steven Gerard??? Cristiano Ronaldo??? Beckham???? ……Now seriously….. are most of you guys from England?

  • MHogan


    How typical!!!!!

    Not a single American on this list!!!!
    You are sooooo Euro-centric!!!!!
    Where’s Cobi Jones, that little kid (Freddie something) and Mia Frickin’ Hamm?!?!?!?!?!?!?!

    J/K – great list :)

  • Dante

    Zidane #1?? Must have been the head butt.

  • Endiablado

    Pele 1
    Maradona 2

    No beckham

    and this is good to go

  • MHogan

    Oh and if anyone comments about how there are technically American’s on the list because some of these countries are in South America, so help me god……..

  • Dante

    well thats because Americans suck at soccer

  • Lostagent

    By the way, rugby owns American football anytime.

  • Leinad

    why the f*ck do people here have to bring up the eternal and stupid debate between football and american football? they are two completely different sports, you can’t compare and expect to come up with which one is better. so north amaericans dig the american football over football, so what? the rest of the world, or at least the vast majority, likes football better. once again, who cares what one country has to say or call the sport “soccer” when a whole planet digs the football world cup like no other sporting event on the planet?

  • Steven

    To me American football is the most uneventful sport i’ve ever seen. Play stops like every 5 seconds, literally. How fun. Not to mention in some cases you aren’t even required to be in shape. Just massive. Some athletic sport that is.

  • Lalalilo

    Dude take Recoba and Becks off the list and it will be fine. controversial (I think that Diego Armando is NO 1 simply because he dominated the game as no one has ever before or after. Pele never played in europe which takes his achievements down a notch) but fine.

  • Crazy Vibe

    Zidane? Oh hell mfoing naww! I feel like head butting whoever made this list.

  • Maggot

    #207 Leinad: once again…

    Hello Mr. Pot.


  • footballer4life

    Are you kidding? Once I saw Beckham on this list I should have realized you had no idea what you were talking about.

  • J

    Pele is the greatest football player of all time yet he came in second?


  • chichi

    yeah…… thats not ronaldo.. thats christiano ronaldo from portugal… the ronaldo your talking about is not that good looking…

  • jahblum

    Please check photo of 7

  • Leinad

    sh*t. how many people are going to go on saying that that isn’t the real ronaldo in the picture???? i’m sure that as soon as jfrater reads one of the posts -coz he only needs to read one to notice- he’ll change it.

  • ViewARandomList…

    20.Barry Sanders
    19.Tom Brady
    18.Lawrence Taylor
    17.Terry Bradshaw
    15.Peyton Manning
    14.Rod Woodson
    13.Llyn Swan
    12.Ray Lewis
    11.Deon Sanders
    10.Steve Young
    9.Otto Graham
    8.Dick Butkis
    7.Walter Payton
    6.Reggie White
    5.Joe Montana
    4.Johny Unitas
    3.John Elway
    2.Jim Brown
    1.Jerry rice

  • dustin

    barry sanders number 20? way too low

  • Leinad

    ^ #217: butthole ^

  • Kaminer

    What is the name of the language that you speak? Is it “american”?!?! Noooo!! It´s English!
    Call this football.

  • stoner

    lol they put cristiano ronaldos picture instead of the actual ronaldo lol
    and wheres ronaldhinio in all this he is a sik soccer playa

  • ViewARandomList…

    leinad how old are you?

  • Juventino

    How can you people think of putting people like Rooney and C-Ro on your lists? Christ, they’re like 23 years old. Watch football for mor than a month and then make a list. Idiots…

  • What about all the great female football players? Seriously Mia Hamm, Shannon Boxx. JFrater, make a follow up list for the female players here. i was sickened by how every person on the list was male.

  • Leinad

    #222: 24. why?

    #224: every player in the list is male because no female player goes even near one of them, and probably, just probably, because the list was intended for only male player, since the game has been mostly played by men since it began.

  • John

    @ 103 Tamugol:

    I’m in total agreement with you. I’m a different John. The “imposter’s” comments are totally his own. And I think he or I need to change the nickname. The other John can ruin my reputation, as I his (although IMHO I believe my comments are always much better). So to the other John(s) out there, I’m John!

  • Leinad

    #224: “i was sickened by how every person on the list was male.” lol…

  • Dante

    90% of the people in this world enjoy futbol over football. So of course American football is a better sport!

  • tio

    -_-! 1. Pelé 2. Maradona…

    Zidane? c’mon man… maybe 3rd… no first… is sacrilege :s

  • ViewARandomList…

    leinad i asked you how old you were cause you called me a butthole. Did you forget?

  • tio

    btw… this list: EPIC FAIL

    sorry ;)

  • Leinad

    #230: oh yeah, i know, but i called u a butthole because if i called you an azzhole they would censor me :)

  • ChrisG

    All Italian football players are scum. Even the talented ones. They cheat and dive and play dirty and pimp women. Italian football has never not been a disgrace.

  • mike J

    finally someone put zizou before pele and maradona!!!
    good list but i was expecting ronaldinho or ronaldo (brazilian) in place of c. ronaldo…

  • Mr. Plow


    I would not have a huge problem running 90 minutes…in my profession I have to stay in top shape.

    BTW…i’m not trying to start some lame ass pissing match between the two sports…take a breather. If you’ll notice, i’m not ripping your beloved football at all…in fact I know a lot of people who enjoy it and have slammed a few pints while cheering on the Romanian team in the World Cup. Besides…it’s dumb topic to fight about.

    GTT ever seen those You Tube compilation clips of soccer/futbol players taking dives and faking injuries? …athletics at its best.

  • Ron

    umm… That’s not football. None of those guys could match Jim Brown, or Jerry Rice or any real football players. That’s soccer, and it’s for sissy’s.

  • Errr… Jamie inserts the pics, not me & reagarding the inclusion of Thuram & Roberto Carlos ” I WANTED TO GIVE EQUAL REPRESENTATION TO DEFENDERS * SO THE LIST WAS MADE IN THE FOLLOWING ORDER :-

    Forward – 7
    Midfielders – 7
    Defenders – 4
    Goal keepers – 2

    I could have included George best, Eusebio, Ferenc Puskas & Many others but that would have made the list biased toward Forwards ONLY. As for my decision to stick with becks, it is for purely footballing reasons. Did someone forget how he scored a freekick from some70 yard away in the 93rd minute to send England in the Euro cup & how his right foot is the national treasure of England? & many more reasons but everyone has their opinion :-)

  • * to forwards & mid fielders ONLY.


    two more and this list is most commented!

  • Suskis

    An an italian, this list puzzles me a bit. Not a single italian player in this list (aside from bonus one). Should I remind you that we won 4 times the world cup?

  • Daithi

    I agree with Suskis. Where is Maldini, Baggio or Buffon?

    Please, change this list.

    Also Ronaldo didn’t win the World Cup in 98. France trounced Brazil in the final.

  • dustin

    7raul7, you dont think maldini is one of the best defenders ever?

  • Daithi


    Beckham didn’t score a 70 yard free kick ever. Get your facts straight and so just a bit off research next time.

  • Omar

    you have to so do top 20 basketball players man!!!

  • Maccie

    Having read this list yesterday and had time to reflect on it I think that it is fundamentally flawed. There is no way that player like Cristiano Ronaldo should be held in the same regard as legends like Pele and Maradona – he’s only been a pro for 7 years.

    I’m sure that if this were compiled 5 years ago players such as Thierry Henry and Ronaldo (Brazilian striker, ex-Real Madrid) would have ranked highly as they were at the pinnacle of their careers and were casually considered ‘the best players in the world.’ To truly establish a players quality you need to reflect on their career and achievements as a whole, and not get carried away by their performance in the forgone season.

    If a criterion were set that excluded players who were still professional, it would prevent ‘flavour of the month’ style selections and would create an altogether more accurate list… provided Alvaro Recoba wasn’t selected. What were you thinking? You must have ties with Uruguay… Does anyone agree with his selection?!

  • mwaha

    Wow I don’t know a thing about futbol and even I can tell you that’s the wrong Ronaldo. Duh.

  • Sitethief

    At least put Cruijff´s name right.
    And forgetting Bergkamp, thats like unforgivable….

  • Ghidoran

    Argentina FTW!

  • jojo

    you may not watch football..but at least get your pictures right..thats cristiano ronaldo’s picture you have. and he has a manchester united badge on his could you have mistook him for the other??

  • quiana

    @cedestra. I hear you all the way. I ll take baseball anyday. go stl cardinals!

  • yplay2

    you put a wrong picture of ronaldo luiz

  • Zubair kaka

    I cant belive how bad this list is. It seems that whoever made this list knows nothing about soccer. Any list that does not have maradona as number one is flawed. Zidand was good but maradona single handedly won a world cup and made his team successfull. He was a beauty to watch and his control of a football is unmatched. Pele was excellent but won one world cup medal sitting on the bench for Brazil- illustrating that he was already in a world class side unlike Diego.

    I knew this list was bad the very moment i say roberto carlos on the list. You’ve heard of a one trick pony? He is a one freekick pony. A rubbish player who cost Brazil their place in the 2006 world cup.

    I know people have different opinions on this subject but we need to redo this list cause its that bad….

  • dudemeister

    WTF?!??! This isn’t football! Its friggin soccer!

  • Francesco

    I stopped reading after I saw Alvaro Recoba.

  • FCB-Santana

    Still have the wrong Ronaldo pictured. Still have Pele at 2nd. I have a feeling you won’t change that.

    You should have done a lot more research.

  • dudemeister

    If it were football, the list would go a little something like:

    5. Jackson
    4. Dawkins
    3. Papali
    2. McNabb
    1. Westbrook

    Kick ass and take names!

  • Ro

    Goodness, Mr.Frater! The image for no.7 is of Cristiano Ronaldo, the current european footballer of the year and not the legendary brazilian Ronaldo.Change it at once,or any genuine soccer lover will lose faith in this site.If this was my first time in listverse and I saw a laughable mistake like that, I wouldv’e never returned.

    Knowing listverse of course, I know it’s because you don’t know much about soccer.That aside, now it’s time to put the right image.

  • Ro

    Beckham, Recoba and Thuram don’t belong here. You wanted to give equity to the defenders but you also have to see if they earn it or not. This is actually really depressing and hurtful because this should be such an intense list with players fighting for the top 20 spots. A list which would sadly have to leave out players of the likes of Dennis”Iceman” Bergkamp. And instead you make a mockery of this by including Beckham, a player who quite honestly will not even make it to the top 1000 best soccer players.

  • Hooverney

    I must say, a brilliant idea for a topic, but unfortunately not well executed. Obviously the writer of the list does not have an indepth knowledge of football

  • anthony p

    Just to add ot the pain, wrong Ronaldo, who put this list together? I can accept Messi not being on here because he is only very early in his career but im sure in 5 years he will be on every list, the kid is brilliant.

  • massoluk

    WTF. Pele, number 2? Seriously?

  • Niall Maclennan

    Pele should be further DOWN the list. This list is too full of FAMOUS players rather than the most talented players.

    Not thought through – how can you not include George Best??

    P.S – FOOTball is played with the feet, not with hands. American football, aswell as taking the name of real football, is no longer about the actual sport but about entertainment, advertising and money. Jerks.

  • ViewARandomList…

    soccer sucks… I’d much rather see Ray Lewis stuffing someone at the goal line or Frank Gore breaking a 60 yard run than see zinadene zidan headbutt his team out of the World Cup

  • Gabtinha

    Zidane #1 before Pelé?! This is so wrong in so many levels

  • Steph

    I hate soccer AND football. There two different sports in America

  • Vallavan

    u guys missed the greatest player

  • redworm

    Dennis Bergkamp

  • johnnyd

    for me,pick from this list of world class magicians
    best uk-
    cruyff,van basten,koeman,gullit,stamm

  • k1w1taxi

    Random List (264)
    Feel free to Feck Off and watch Ray whoever and stop wasting everybody’s time with your inane comments on a list about a sport you profess to know nothing about and don’t like.

    7Raul7. Nice try to spread the talent as it were. After all the big name goal scorers wouldn’t be there without the rest of the team. However the inclusion of Beckham and apparently
    Recobe (I’ve never heard of him so am going by the general consensus here)in particular seem to big you two biggest errors of inclusion. Given their playing positions I would have thought there were several candidates that would have been better. Rankings within the 20 is another matter and way to subjective for me to tackle.

  • k1w1taxi

    GRRR!! Big you s/b be your


  • 270. k1w1taxi: Random List (264)…Feck Off…
    kiwitaxi, the new LV pejorative of choice is *asshat*. It won’t replace Feck Off, since Feck Off is a directive, not a pejorative, but sometimes you just want a good pejorative, but not one which is going to get you red carded.
    Hence, asshat has joined retart in the LV special lexicon.

  • Jrodickens

    the ronaldo you are talking about is not the ronaldo you have a picture of
    that is the current soccer star from portugal named ronaldo not the one from brazil

  • mike599

    Where the hell is bobby moore?

  • FL

    96. Richiet: What!!! Steven Gerrard after Lampard pffff!

  • dusha

    Ronaldinho for sure needs to be added to this list. I was never really a fan of soccer before I got to see him play in 2002.

  • arkz

    hehe i watched the game where zidane lost the world cup for france he shouldn’t have done it… oh well

  • joeyjoejoeshabadoo

    Soccer is for pussies.

  • Usher

    u put the gay ronaldo (cristiano)
    there in tha picture instead of the good one

  • Catarina

    WTF. I’m portuguese but i totally disagree with cristiano being in this list. He has no maturity, he’s still so young and so dumb, i’m mean he has no modesty, he doesn’t know to speak, he has lost everythnig with his sin of vanity. This list should contain great names of men and not of some stupid boys with so much to learn yet. Because a good football player should not be caracterized only for the goals or assistances he made, he should also be caracterized for his personality, and cristiano’s one is rotten. And come on, he never did anything special in Portugal team. Where is George Best?

  • Amy

    Emm where is George Best? Even Pele said he was the best footballer ever.

    David Beckham is a one trick pony

  • rabcarr

    Beckham should never be in this list, he is an average player at best and also where is Ronaldhino

  • Louise

    I’ve really hoped for Michael Laudrup or Peter Schmeichel to be on this list. But otherwise, I just want to congratulate for the most impressive and purehearted list ever. Don’t agree with many of them, but hats off, that you had the balls(!) to write such a controversial list!!!

  • Caolan

    Poor Effort who ever mad this list , how are lilian thuram , alvaro recoba and david beckham in ur list , i would have them in any top 200 of all time!

    Raul at number ten , a joke!

    how have u left out
    Ferenc Puskas
    Mario Kempes
    Paulo Maldini
    Roberto Baggio
    Steven Gerrard
    Marco Van Basten
    Kenny Dalglish
    Emlyn Hughes
    George Best
    Liam Brady

  • Kon

    NO mention of Dean Windass? >:(

    (note: attempt to push home team.) :D

  • I finally got curious enough to scan through the posts, justs to see how many posters mentioned the mix-up in the Ronaldo photo, as if they were the *FIRST* one to notice. The total (just a scan, notice, I did not reread every word of all 285 posts) was 35!
    People aren’t reading the posts before adding their own. It’s especially telling when the 2 or 3 directly above have pointed out the exact same problem.

  • Cyn

    286. segue –
    i appreciate the effort and your other attempts elsewhere…trying to fight the good fight!
    not that you don’t know but you could well be pissing in the wind. ;)
    still..i do find some of it perversely amusing. so thank you.

  • Daithi

    Seriously, Gerard in this list would further take from it’s credibility.

  • Jaap

    Who is responsoble for this list, I miss great players as Garrincha, Eusebio, Socrates, Puskas,

    Who put Koeman on 14, just a simple defender with a great right foot, there are 100s of him, just like Thuram

  • 287. Cyn: not that you don’t know but you could well be pissing in the wind. ;)
    still..i do find some of it perversely amusing. so thank you.
    Thanks, and yes, I know.
    It’s just that I’m a little obsessive compulsive, and the disorder of the repeat posts distrupt my sense of order. For Gods sake, woman, my home library is alphabetized by author, sub- alphabetized by title. My cd collection is set up identically!
    Okay, I’m feeling better now.

  • Cyn

    hey, i appreciate OC behavior ever so much for oh so many different reasons. ;)
    a place for everything and everything in its place.

    but yeah.. i do wish people actually read the list in its entirety and at least skimmed preceding comments but oh, well if it keeps them entertained for a moment ..the world’s a saner, smarter place for it. least for a moment. makes me appreciate ‘stay in the moment’ all the more too.

  • Cyn, I have to tell you, I have told my husband and my friends that this is the *only* site of it’s kind that I even bother visiting, much less posting to, because overall the site attracts a more intelligent bunch of people than any other I’ve run across. The subjects are varied, there seem to be knowledgeable people in just about every subject under the sun, and so it’s educational and fun!
    Can’t beat that with a stick.

  • Smart_deedee

    Alvaro Recoba?…
    David Beckham?…I love the man but he’s not even between the best 20 players today…let alone ever!!

    What Happened to Marco Van Basten? The man has scored goals that are consider some of the best ever.

    And I would have put Didier Deschamps instead of Thuram, since he was the captain of France when they won the world cup and won several Champions League and Calcio Championships.

  • Tangofish

    Anyone mentioned Jimmy Greaves.

  • yakultdrunk

    just a suggestion: how about a list of the top 20 or 10 female football players? They don’t seem to get enough publicity, even though they’re a lot of great female football players. ^_^

  • ducttapebandit

    This ignorant American only recognized 5 names on the list.

    If there’s a list of the top 10 female players compiled, let me throw Michelle Akers into consideration (though I am biased since I went to a soccer camp she coached at).

    One quick aside to the guy who mentioned montages of soccer flops: have you watched the NBA recently?

    @278: Hey, I have yet to hear of any American football players getting shot because of poor play…

  • fttd

    i think all will agree on
    1. Pele
    2. Maradona
    3. Ronaldo

    zidane is up there too he is just not number 1 material, especially after his world cup incident, he let his team down

  • Mr. Plow


    I think the acting is a little more prevalent in good ole futbol. The NBA has a billion problems…but flopping ain’t one of them. Perhaps you are watching too much college basketball. Besides, no one brought up basketball, that is your little strawman.

  • Cyn

    292. segue –
    i’ve frequented more than a few places online that i’d not send my dog..if i had a dog. ;)
    LV ain’t perfect but for a free site where you only have to put up w/ a few ads plus get a new list every day plus some of the most original content online plus some of the most intelligent and creative commenting…oh hell yeah, can’t be beat.
    and i do think regulars like you do contribute to keeping the asshat traffic down by being confrontational and even combative. asshats need someone to respond in kind..w/ their same level of stupidity so when they’re confronted by actual wit and sarcasm they run away.
    so keep up the good work!

  • endiablado

    1. Pele
    2. Maradona
    3. Ronaldo

    SOunds good to me

  • 299. Cyn:…regulars like you do contribute to keeping the asshat traffic down by being confrontational and even combative.
    You’re welcome.

  • Tangofish

    @285 DEEEAAANNNOOOOOO The Man, The Legend..

    Up The Tigers XDXD

    My home side too but tbh Deano!! maybe if it was top Hull players lol :p

  • bigski

    segue- thanks for the kind word`s at post 292. You shouldn`t have.

  • Crowl

    pele should not even be top 5 and beckenbauer IS the best defender of all time he is easily top 5 he dominated his era

  • anthony

    Maradonna should never be put as #1, that would be pele

  • ViewARandomList…

    I agree with 278

  • Idelber

    A top 20 without Garrincha and Di Stefano? What are you, 12 years old?

    At least get your facts right: the 1998 World Champion was France, not Brazil.

  • oh thanx so much jamie for changing the pic, i was expecting a lynch mob outside my house in a little time. :-(

  • meangene

    Roy Keane & Patrick Viera belong in this list. George Best not being in it makes this list look short sited

  • Gaz

    where’s dennis law? or the great dance ( peter schme)
    or henry or edwin van der saar or romario or ballack or ronaldinho or giggs or scholes or van nistelroy or viera or roy keane or eric cantona or ole gunnar solskjær

    haha i agree with everybody that there should be more names but to be honest, its not a bad list, weldone mate, cause hes trying to make it as fair as possible by adding people from different places and countrys, and if he did add all the people we mentioned he jus wouldnt be able to fit them in! and like he said its his opinion so fair play to ya mate!

  • Gaz

    great dance?? lol great dane* typo

  • Peter

    What! No Van Basten?

  • Kylo

    This is the worst list I have ever seen on this site? Zidane lost a Cup for his team, losing his cool when the team needed it most. That is not a #1. Pele and Maradona are light years ahead of him. No Best? What are you smoking, terrible, terrible job writing this. Wow!

  • Kylo

    Baggio and Romario for sure.

  • Sugen

    TO 113 Kunle: I don’t believe you can think of JJ Okocha in a top 20 list. Even in a top 100 he might be found wanting. I believe you are a Nigerian. On the African scene we can talk of Abedi Pele (Ghana), Tony Yeboah (Ghana), Roger Milla (Cameroon), Nkono (Cameroon), Sunday Oliseh, George Finidi (all of Nigeria), George Opon Weah (Liberia). But to think of including these in a top 10 of the world would be difficult. Perhaps George Weah would knock on the doors since in one year he won the World Best Player, European Best Player, and African Best Player and in the following year only lost it to Ronaldo (Brazil) because of a spitting incident.

    To 178: Football/Soccer is not for pussies. Football/soccer is the best thing that ever happened to the world

  • 303. bigski: segue- thanks for the kind word`s at post 292…
    I’m just glad you realized you were counted among the intelligent core, I sincerely hope the others know who they are as well.

  • Clemen

    As for your decision to make the list unbiased towards any position, even then, I don’t think you should have included Roberto Carlos. People like Bobby Moore, Paul Breitner, Franco Baresi and others would be more logical choices than Carlos.

  • GTT

    235. Mr. Plow: exactly the type of thing I was trying to avoid. You will notice that I refrained from bashing American football and only tried to point out what I believe are some of the best features of football. You, however, have managed to give a pretty good piece of advice while falling prey to the trash talk. Walk the talk, my friend.

  • galama

    where is friedenreich, all time top-scorer for Brazil?

  • Gaz

    wheres Nobby Stiles or Ferenc Puskás or Geoff Hurst or bobbie and jack chalton or Kenny Dalglish or Henrik Larsson

    and wheres Gordan Banks ( elected in a poll by the IFFHS as the second best goalkeeper of the 20th Century – after Lev Yashin (1st) and before Dino Zoff (3rd)), yet you have oliver khan up there???!!

  • Marcel

    Man, you shouldn’t have done a football list.
    But since you did… You missed Puskas. And Garrincha. For starts.
    And for Christ’s sake, Pele and Maradona behind Zidane?

    Yeah, Zidane is a legend. But Maradona is the King of Football. And Pele is its god.
    Not a good list, not a good list.

  • yaarghmaargh

    It’s always funny how people that point out how much they don’t give a damn about something still take the time to point that out :)

    Anyway, since people have pretty much ignored my point that Boniek should be on the list, let me point out something else:

    Having Lev Yashin that low is a criminal offense. The man revolutionized his position. If you want to give a fair shake to all positions then Yashin should be in the top 5.

    My top 5:

    1) maradona
    2) pele
    3) cruyff
    4) Zidan
    5) Yashin

  • Joe

    Not for nothing but correct me if I’m wrong Pele never cost his team a world cup with a selfish and uterly stupid act as your number one did.

  • Paulb

    Marcel, you’ve got it mixed up, Pele is King of Futbol and Maradona is God. Maradona even has a religion named after him, and remember his famous goal, the Hand of GOD

  • Paulb

    but still 1. Pele, 2. Maradona

  • matty b

    This is hilarious.

    1st off….Ronaldo didn’t win the world cup in ’98. France won it. Ronaldo is Brazilian.

    Anyone who thinks any current player should be in the top 20 players of all time is having a laugh. The only 2 recent players who come close are Ronaldo(brazilian)and Zidane.

    It is always hard for defenders to get onto lists like these but to put Thuram and Carlos ahead of Desially, Maldini, Moore,Baresi and many other i cant imediatly think off is daft!!

    As for no George Best…….. we in Ireland have a saying……Maradona good, Pele better, GEORGE BEST. a true genius! sorely missed.

  • Mr. Plow


    lol wut?

    Fer crissakes…I was making a joke about the flops. I don’t think flops quite rises to the level of trash talk.

    Seriously though, I don’t give one flying fack about futbol vs. football. I respect them both…and know great athletes in both sports. The debate has much more to do with people trying to prop one culture up over another more than the sport itself…laaaaammmmmeeeee.

  • ViewARandomList…

    #322, i dont give a damn about your post

  • Anon

    I can’t add anything. All personal omissions, corrections and outrages that have occurred to me have already been expressed above! The last of my names figuring was the legendary Stanley Mathews. If he hadn’t been there I would have pointed out that any sportsperson must be judged in the context of their time. Consequently his exalted position is equivalent to that of W.G Grace in cricket. So work done. That’s what comes of being away from home and the site for a few days. At any rate, glad to see at least an attempt made to represent a range of positions and not just high-profile forwards, even if I don’t necessarily agree with the full heading list.

    Since so many people have pointed out the Zidane World Cup incident, how about a Top list of great players who blotted their copybook famously? Are there enough? Zidane, Maradona, Cantona, Gazza – off the field at least, the Chilean goalkeeper ‘Condor’ Rojas. There are five to be getting on with, not to mention those game-fixing scandals.

  • Anon

    Can’t resist one reaction. As a fervent supporter of British soccer, I’m nevertheless compelled by living in South America to unhesitatingly put the Argentinian Riquelme, and probably his compatriot Zanetti, above Beckham. Wonderful playmakers. Has anyone remembered how Beckham not only inspired, but also let England down at times? I’m sorry to have to say it, but Beckham is more famous than great, albeit a worthy ambassador for the sport. Anyone who followed his spell with Real Madrid would have noticed his overall footballing talent level stood below their then current international average, and in the end he couldn’t even hold down his place (as couldn’t Ronaldo, but for different reasons).

  • laszlo

    i think pele should be number 1 hes the best ive seen and i love him, also best should be in that, bobby charlton, luke chadwick, and phil nevil

  • tjp

    No Niall Quinn? Or Kevin Phillips? :P

    Can we have a list of the twenty worst footballers of all time next?

  • Danny

    What About Robinho, He Plays For Man City, Scored a Hatrick, Should Be 1st, 17th in the league thanks to robinho

  • Ro

    330) Anon,

    Yeah, nicely said. I’m still fuming over the inclusion of Beckham in this list. He was always overrated. The current Man U no.7, Ronaldo, has already done plenty of things Beckham could never do during his best days in Man U. Like I said before in the comments;Beckham? Not even the top 1000.

  • laszlo

    beckham should be 3rd in the world dont no wat ur on about m8

  • Jimmy

    I personally think that James Fernandez is the best around (Goalkeeper)

  • Marcel

    324. Paulb,Maradona is a football god only in Argentina,where they tend to worship their heroes (like Evita, Gardel etc.)
    But if they (Pele and Maradona) played against one another… Pele would kick Maradona’s cocained ass.

  • PJ

    No mention of

    Duncan Edwards
    Gordon Banks

    yet Beckham is in.

    Sorry, but my granny could have come up with a better list

  • PJ


    I forgot Stanley Matthews as well

  • Walton

    I dont really think anyone can criticise these lists…personally i dont agree with it…but everyone has there own opinion….
    Having said that…you made some big thinking your’e french ;)..

    George Best

  • Patrick

    No, its the right Ronaldo as Christiano Ronaldo is portuese and the Ronaldo in the picture is wearing a Brazilian shirt

  • listlover

    Brazilian Ronaldo’s better than Portuguese Ronaldo because he mastered his position, was an excellent finisher–even when he got fatter.

    Schmeichel was waaay better than Kahn, Buffon’s better than Kahn, too.

  • johnnyd

    my top 6
    van basten

  • Im neither french, nor spanish, nor italian. Why so much contemplation about my nationality ?? Im Pakistani, for clearance’s sake.

  • Maggot

    Are most of the negative comments about Beckham really the resultant backlash because of his more recent status as a “pop-culture icon”? I know we here in America tend to do that – build someone up until they become overexposed, then proceed to tear them down.

    I admit, being a “typical American”, I know next to nothing about the nuances of the game, but I refer to the fact that he was the subject (or theme, rather) of a movie “Bend it Like Beckham” some time ago, and this was, I think, before he was considered a so-called household name internationally. Point being, he obviously had the talent to warrant such a thing. Although, reading further down the list I see reference to the earlier Zico’s bending skills for example, so it’s not like Beckham is unique or re-invented the free kick with that particular skill. OTOH, being “only” let’s say second best ever at that doesn’t mean he is chopped liver.

    Anyway, is Beckham worthy of being considered a top player or not, based solely on the merits of his actual play? To those saying he is “over-rated”, is that because his off-field activities and lifestyle have overshadowed his actual playing performance?

  • dan

    no thiery henry
    george best
    del piero
    liam brady

    yet recoba, thuram makes it wtf

  • matty b

    345 maggot…….Beckham came to prominance with Man Utd as a very acurate long ball player. His other great talent was his free kicks, crosses and general set pieces.

    Any player can bend the ball but rarely can someone repeatedly get it up over a wall and back down quick enough to be one target. The bend he put on crosses made them almost impossible for goalkeepers to defend.

    Beckhams fame took off when he scored ‘that goal’ from inside his own half. Great vision and technique. In my opinion, and that of many, Beckhams abilities ended there. He could not run with the ball at his feet and beat men, he could not head the ball, he wasnt great when needed to defend and he didnt have the flair to turn a game on its head. Well unless it was a free kick.

    I believe he is overhyped because of his social standing. I can honestly say he wouldn’t make it into the greatest England team ever and certainly not in my top 100 players ever never mind top 20. That said most people in britain have grown to like him as a person. He comes across very well.

    In his hayday he was one of the best but still not in the top ten. even Man Utd had/have far better midfielders than him in Scholes, Keane and Giggs.Figo, Zidane, Nedved, Viera, Gerrard, Makelele, Seedorf and more were all better players.

    My un-biased opinion.

  • maybesteve

    Maggot: [as an english girl] David Beckham has displayed in the past some excellent footballing skills.

    He is not ‘phenomenal’ as some people suggest he is – I think his talent has been largely inflated by his presence as a media persona. But he does certainly have some skill in the game, it’s just we’re past that now. He is one of those players that could have done well just by his talent, but chose to buy into being a celebrity and thus his talent is much overrated.

  • Anon

    maggot, (345),

    matty b (347) has just given an admirable detailed technical explanation of Beckham’s strengths and weaknesses, which no one familiar with the game and the player could better.

    As I also remarked adversely on his inclusion in my comment 330, I feel free add:

    Firstly that my remarks about the lower level of his OVERALL talent compared with his international team mates at Real Madrid is exactly explained by matty b’s analysis. To be in the world’s top in a sport that would fill endless telephone directories with its high-class players, you’ll need a speciality, but your all-round ability must also cut the mustard too, or better still, lead the bunch. I’m sorry, but Beckham’s didn’t compared with his RM contemporaries.

    He was a totally famous icon well before ‘Bend It Like Beckham’, an absolutely delightful social concern-cum-sports film about a young British Asian girl with the talent and dream to become a serious soccer player. (Surprisingly, not even the only good British movie about a girl soccer player either!)

    When I was a kid, many of our mighty heroes of British soccer escaped into the profession from coal mining and other grim industries. We kids used to think that to be one of them would leave you living like a duke for life. In fact they earned about twice as much as a miner, no more, their career was short, and few even owned a motor car in those days. Unless they made a determined effort to invest what they could save in something like a small sports shop or pub, ot continued in training, managing or scouting for new players, their final years might well end in distressing poverty. One or two of the best-known were found sick or even dead and alone in some small digs. Compare that with Beckham! Personally I find the money earned by some of the present generation of musical, sports and movie stars as disproportionately distasteful (to say the least) in the other direction. Does Beckham need all those cars? But at least, like Pelé he carries it off with a great deal more modesty, style, dignity and aplomb than others one could name but won’t, like Maradona, and deserves all credit for that.

  • Anon

    I’d like to add a pace (from pax) for any who disagree with me/us and do indeed rate Beckham so high, and whose comments and other recommendations I thoroughly endorse, such as Muttley at comment 60.

    Thanks for including Sir Stanley, Muttley. As a kid I had the privilege of watching him in the flesh at very close quarters from the front barrier (as well as seeing his Wembley victory on ciné newsreel). Even towards the end of his career he literally mesmerised our marking backs like a snake a rabbit. Our guys literally didn’t get a touch of the ball once it was *tied* to his boots. A lovely, modest man too.

  • Sinan V

    Recoba ? who wrote this article ? Recoba’s Dad ?

  • Anon

    Sinan V, (351),

    “Recoba ? who wrote this article ? Recoba’s Dad ?”

    Aha – Some might be inclined to suggest Beckham’s!

    At least it shows the author of this topic knows Recoba exists, whereas others don’t know him by name, let alone by sight. Whatever his world position, Recoba was at Inter for 8 consecutive years, and for a while there was the highest paid soccer player in the world. No mean feats.

    It’s also worth remembering that Uruguay once led the world internationally for short periods, winning World Cups against their giant neighbours Argentina and Brazil, the latter when they were hosts. That from a tiny population base of around two to two-and-a-half million inhabitants.

    Some might consider Sosa and Forlán as superior recent Uruguayan players to Recoba, let alone a whole bunch of better-known Brazilians and Argentinians. On the other hand, history can elevate Uruguay with such glorious ghosts of the past as Andrade, Francescoli, Nasazzi and Varela.

  • heyyy!

    Lack of Christiano Ronaldo is upsetting

  • lil nick

    Where is the most exciting player to watch in this list? (Christiano Ronaldo)

    Whatever, you’ve made better lists in the past. Forget this one and make a new one.

  • lil nick

    I’ve also noticed many people making comments have suggested putting in ronaldinho… please don’t put him on if you make another list. (OVERRATED)

  • Anon

    lil nick, (355),

    With respect, I’d suggest that Ronaldinho is off the boil rather than overrated. Well off the boil. At his magical best he was well worthy of consideration here. Perhaps he’s just got bored with soccer and hasn’t got a career-long concentration span. But if he ever gets back on the boil again, he couldn’t possibly be discounted.

  • Martin

    This list is for on the field performances, not how you were off the field, right?

    Then I would rank Maradona number 1.

    Everything I’ve seen with Maradona, every little touch of the ball could be considered art.

    It was just beautiful :-)

    When people mention Pelé, they are quick to say how great a man he was off the pitch. I’m sure he was but this is a football skills list, or at least it should be.

    So, I would rank Pelé number 2. after Maradona.

  • 8rustystaples

    I’m a little confused as to how you can write Pele “was the greatest soccer player in the history of the game,” but then rank him second behind Zidane.
    Doesn’t make much sense.

  • Anon

    Here’s a thought for the Pelé vs Maradona line-up. I wonder how many making the judgement have watched both players (live or recorded, doesn’t matter) in large and equal quantities throughout their respective careers, at club as well as international level? I haven’t, by any means. I’ve seen the well-known clips of both men, including at the time they were actually filmed, starting with Pelé when he first came to international notice. Those are what incline me to put him top (for on-field skill in the context of his time). But I’ve undoubtedly had the chance to see far more of Maradona at all levels, and for the duration of entire matches as well. That may be an advantage or disadvantage.

    How about everyone else?

  • Ellzy

    Pele is far better than zidane , pele scored 1004 goals whilst playing football history and zidane must of scored sumink like 501 , maradona was a fantastic player too, he should of been second not third its a shame that he doesn’t play anymore, i like his hand of god , but he kicked England out of da world cup 1996 , so that was annoying. But atleeast he played well and made Argentina a succsessful team..

  • Ellzy

    Roberto Baggio was class , his free kicks blew me away! :D:D

  • Ellzy

    What about Lilian Thuram he was a great defender but I would not say he was the best player in the world , He was good when he wanted to be. Like when he played against croatia for France and scored 2 amazing goals to make 2-1 .. PURE CLASS!!!

  • cmo86

    Where is George Best? Would be mentioned in the same breath as Pele or Maradonna by any real football fan…

  • Maggot

    347-349: Thanks guys (and girl!) for your informative replies to my query about Beckham’s proper ranking. As I said, I’m not a student of this game, but definately interested enough to learn. Not to mention, I do have great respect for the abilities and accomlishments of all these guys (joking aside, such as my earlier comment 164). I’m not in the business of “checking out” guys (not that there’s anything wrong with that!), but look at the thigh musculature of some of these dudes. Definately a demanding sport. But, I know how it is when trying to rank athletes, especially of diferent eras. I’ve engaged in many a usenet debate on various opinions and rankings of American footballers, as I am as rabid about that sport as you guys are of this one.

    One response to Anon’s 349 “I find the money earned by some of the present generation of musical, sports and movie stars as disproportionately distasteful
    All I can say is I’d rather see the athletes get the money than watch the team owners lining their pockets. Sure it’s a business and they are entitled to make money on their investment, but the players are the game. Without them, the owners got nothing. Ok well ideally, I’d rather the stars make less and the owners take less, so that ticket prices can be lower for us fans, but due to simple supply & demand economics, apparently there’s no reason to lower ticket prices (yet) for us “average joes”.

  • Anon

    Maggot, (364),

    My comment about money earned by big stars really needed a much wider context to make full sense. First off, it was intended to state without ambiguity that I’d far rather see these devoted great sportsmen and entertainers earn too much than too little (i.e. not even enough to survive on). And I agree about owners, although when and if they take great investment risks in what is risky business at base anyway, I see no reason why their gains shouldn’t reflect that reasonably. Without then we wouldn’t get the spectacle either.

    What I really meant to imply covers a lot of other ground.

    Quite recently I read that AVERAGE U.S. pro soccer players don’t make enough to live on. O.K. There has to be a sliding scale or reward for talent based on performance, pulling power and fan support. But the same remark applies as for yours on owners. What would sport be if there was nothing but winning teams and their supremely talented players? Nothing. It’s a vast pyramid built on competition and the usually unfulfilled hopes and dreams of minor teams and their devoted supporters. But they are the very base and body of the pyramid on which the golden winners perch. Why should those at the top earn so much, and those they are standing so high on often have to struggle to survive?

    It goes beyond that. People who have the awesome responsibility of running a country or being responsible for its security, wonderful surgeons, brilliant scientists and other less popular but superb talents often earn far, far less than these guys. That may make sense to some. It doesn’t to me. Well, economically maybe, but certainly not morally or socially. I realise taxing is supposed to even things out, but does it? When you’ve got that much dosh you can also afford to hire the sort of advisers who will tell you how to sidestep paying taxes as slickly as you sidestep opponents on the field. I seem to recall reading recently that some such murky situation had cropped up with a hugely paid and popular star in the entertainment business who was renowned for social concern. I can’t remember who offhand, but the situation is far from unique.

    Finally, and Beckham is certainly an exception, the fortunes sometimes destroy stars physically and mentally, or both. For every Beckham, there is at least one Gazza or Georgie Best. For every Pelé at least one Maradona. (Fill in for other sports and entertainments.) A significant number of them are simply unable to handle the situation. Admittedly, fame can play as big a part as dosh in that, and the’s no way to pay a star *less fame*! But I do recall reading the memoirs of a top team manager who said that the best part of his time was spent not on the sport itself, but on advising, *nannying* and sorting out the lives of mixed-up young players who were completely unbalanced by their new-found public status.

    And you are surely right about fans deserving economic consideration too. The most devoted of them (us) support and pay out through thick and thin, snow and shine, good times and bad. Where would stars be without them? When I was a kid we surely didn’t pay enough gate money to reward our heroes. Now I can’t afford to go to live matches (in UK) and rely entirely on TV (happily, colour reception was invented).

    Of course, all this is simply market forces, and the brutal truth is that market forces, like life itself, are not fair and not supposed to be fair! I have no expectation anything will change.

  • bobghet

    worst list i’ve ever seen, honestly.

    beckham and recoba are particular embarrassments. truly shocking.

    you cleary know nothing about football. where’s puskas?

  • Zak

    George Best
    Sir Stanley Matthews
    Johan Cruyff
    Alfredo Di Stefano
    Zinadine Zidane
    Michel Platini
    Paulo Maldini
    Franco Baresi
    Lev Yashin
    Bobby Moore
    Ryan Giggs

  • Jari Litmanen

    Jari Litmanen.

    Jari Litmanen was the Champions League top scorer twice in a row scoring over 15 goals in Champions League (!!!)

    He was one of the star players of Louis van Gaal’s team that reached the UEFA Champions League final twice in a row. Litmanen became the first ever Finnish player to have won the European Cup when Ajax beat AC Milan in the 1994-95 final.

    He scored 26 goals in the 1993-94 season, becoming the league’s top scorer, and leading Ajax to the title.

  • Anon


    Fine list, with the great merit of being almost completely historical. It would be hard to disagree seriously with any there, even if others of equal merit (past and present) might be added for consideration.

    I think the compiler would probably consider the choice baised towards forwards though, given the stated criteria of the topic.

  • Mak

    Why recoba is there?!!or also koeman?couldnt you have raikard ro van bastten instead of them,even nistelrooy?…but agree with zizu…he is best of all the time!!!

  • Alex

    Ronaldo was not part of “World Cup–winning teams in 1998 and in 2002” simply because Brazil did not win the 1998 world cup.

  • Alex

    Ronaldo was not part of “World Cup–winning teams in 1998 and in 2002” simply because Brazil did not win the 1998 world cup. France did. Brazil won the 1994 world cup and Ronaldo was in that team althogh he did not played in any match.

  • John Friedman

    richiet, your list is stupid. Not many brazilians and they’re the best.

  • sgfan-E

    Very good list!But it would be better with STEVEN GERRARD!!!

  • Pete

    van Basten
    Di Stefano
    B Charlton
    M Laudrup
    Ronaldo (Brazil)
    followed by: Weah, Bergkamp, Henry, Baggio, Totti, Matthaus, Yashin, Shevchenko, K-H Rummenigge, Finney…

  • Brian

    where is Maldini??????????!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • ASH

    Well…all these futball players r gud but i’d say pele is gr8 and among the females I’d say Mia Hamm is the bst ….I’m sure none of u can say shes not.

  • Big Oscar

    as an american im furious as 2 tha stupidity of my country when it comes 2 football. we need 2 rename american football dumbass ball and call it a day, i hate being american. oh yeah, cruyff #5 he was voted best european football, not zidane, get ur list right mate.

  • Denny V

    i am an american and enjoy both the american and world form of football. these comments about american football are really cliche. we all have noticed that the names are the same and that you want to spout off about how the american game is better because you get to “hit people.” the name really is more suited to the world game… it is played with the feet, so FOOTball would be the logical choice for a name.

    but as far as the list is concerned is full of contradictions and cruyff needs to be bumped up to #2 in my opinion and pele as numero uno. making a list of the best ever in anything can be tricky. better to label it as my favorite players of all time, because there will always be someone who disagrees and wants to tell you how it should be (much like i just did).

    it also makes me sad that henry, van basten (spelling?), puskas, buffon, and the great ronaldinho (he really can play any attacking role) were beaten by the likes of luis figo and becks.

    one love

  • Denny V

    and to who had o.j. simpson on their list for best american football players… the only reason most know juice because he killed his wife… not futbol.

    and calling it communist football… the only word i can think of to describe that is ignorance.

    big up dan morino for ace ventura

    and cristiano ronaldo is a poof (twat, batty boy, bum bandit, ect)

    and the guy that included socrates with the best brazilians… bravo, he was magic.

    and to whoever wanted to know why there are no north americans on the list… if we had athletes like kobe bryant and ladamian thomelson (spelling again?) playing the beautiful game i think we would stand a chance on the international level. but all we have is donovans ego, and hope that jozy altadore can make something out of himself (which i think he can do).

    give me an ear full if you fancy

    one love

  • Lokk

    Zidane was a genius. Jeah, I agree Pele did score more and probably were better in it than Zizou, but it dosen’t mean that Pele was the best football player of all time. The way Zidane played was something you cannot descrive with words. He’s the best ever!

  • Aron

    Where is Ferenc Puskas? Any top 20 list is incomplete with him.

  • Ryan

    Recoba, Thuram, Kahn, Beckham, this is a terrible list. Where is Best, Charlton, Maldini, Kaka, C.Ronaldo, Ronaldinho, Jennings



    and the best player the planet has ever seen evan thow his career has not gone on as long as the listed he is still better then them all CHRISTIANO RONALDO!

  • joaoprtugal

    and eusebio????

  • Fergal Hunter

    George Best
    Kenny Dalglish
    Bobby Charlton

    These players not on it but david beckham and koeman are. Your list is fail.

  • Jay

    Where is Hugo Sanchez, he played for Real Madrid and he was awsome!

  • dave

    what a rubbish list,so many missed out ..beckham above best…and no greaves etc.least i’ve seen some of them play

  • Tussinel

    Where is Hagi??? He should be in top 10!..he is the best football player from eastern europe ever!! He was truly a football artist!!!

  • Ollie

    this list was never going to be without controversy, but come on man, this is horrendous. How can you put thuram and carlos up, but not Baresi or Maldini? Recoba could have been on the list if he wasnt such a fuck up. I dont think figo, beckham or raul should be on there. Where are van basten and garrincha? If you are going to put people like figo and beckham on then ronaldinho has to go in too.

  • Tom

    In my opinion it’s useless to make a Top 20 list of the best players. It’s hard to compare goal-keepers, defenders and strikers for example and it’s nearly impossible to compare players like Di Stefano, Beckenbauer, Pele and Gerrad. Each decade had its own Top Players and each national league had their allstars.
    A list of Top 20 or Top 22 should at least include 2 goal-keeper (what about Dino Zoff and Sepp Mueller?), at least 5 defender but also defensive mid-field-players. As supporters, we usually focus on great offensive players (Pele, Ronaldo, Maradona…) – but that’s unfair because the defense is also very important. Think about Germany’s and Italy’s success in football history – in World Cup 2002 for example, Oliver Kahn kept the German team in race. Actually I don’t like Kahn as a person – but his performance during this tournament, his dominant influence at the final result of his team but also of the tournament was unique.
    Some of you make “patriotic lists” including several English Players – but when you talk about “World players” you should also take into account players from Hungary (50’s), Germany (70’s & 90’s), Italians but also outstanding players from Eastern Europe like Poland (70’s)…

  • Benj

    this is an utterly terrible, terrible list
    complete bollocks
    you said constructive criticism
    but i couldn’t do that
    there’s too much wrong with it

  • Matt P

    with a list as bad as this i’m suprised filip sebo or morten weighorst isn’t number 1

  • the rock

    in fact, Ronaldo is much better than rated.
    depite his private life, he has earned lots of hounors, set lots of records and has made greate contributions to this game.

    … im talking bout the real ronaldo.

  • Rob Mudriczki


    1 – Ferenc Puskas (Hungary)
    2 – Maradona (Arg)
    3 – Pele (Bra)
    4 – Cruyff (Holland)
    5 – Garrincha (Bra)
    Di Stefano (Arg)
    Zidane (France)
    Platini (France)
    Seeler (Ger)
    Shiaffino (Uruguay)
    Ronaldo (Bra)
    Eusebio (Portugal)
    Kocsis (Hungary)
    Piola (Italy)
    Matthaus (Ger)
    Muller (Ger)
    Van Basten (Holland)
    Baggio (Italy)
    Greaves (Eng)
    Best (N Ire)

    Other Notable – Baresi (Italy), Charlton (Eng), The ‘Kaiser’ Beckenbaur (Ger), Schmeichel (Den) or Yashin (USSR), Hidekuti (Hungary), Zico (Bra), Giggs (Wales)

  • liam

    those people who say soccer is for sissys and american football is for real men are morons.after all you’re the ones wearing helmets and shoulders

  • thelak

    Honestly. I thought this list was a joke.So poor Some of the players on it are not in the top 100 of all time let alone top 20.

    Honestly David Beckham in the top 20! The guy is a good player with a good right foot and dead ball skills. Beyond that is a poster boy.

    Thuram, Roberto Carlos, Figo, Raul. Khan and Recoba especially should not be on this list. They are merely very good players from the last 10 years or so. Recoba especially! pleeeese!

    Di Stefano at 11 as well! Should be much higher!

    And where are players like

    Ladislao Kubala (never gets the credit he deserves)
    Van Basten
    Stanley Matthews
    George Best

  • Andy

    Funniest list ever, Thurham, Recoba, Ronald Koeman, Figo, Raul and Kahn? ROFLMAO!!

    Where is Garrincha? Puskas? Eusebio? But I have to enforce this, any TOP 10 list without Garrincha and Puskas is a joke, any TOP 20 list without them shouldn’t even be read.

    Zidane ahead of Pele is also a huge joke, but it’s so obvious I won’t mention it…oooops!

  • tropical

    To make the same point made above where is George Best? The guy didnt even reach his full potential and was still outstanding!!. IMO Cantona, Charlton, maldini, schemical, giggs are amazzzzing too and despite my enormous love for zizou, pele and marodona easily outclass him

  • Sad

    im gonna be as diplomatic as i can. sadly enough.. this list sucks donkey balls, i mean come on liliam thuram on 20th place? Recoba? Zidane is great top ten clearly but not Number 1. Buffon is a better goalkeeper than lev and kahn were. Its just a bad list.

  • Pearlytom

    what’s zizou doing in number one??!!

    and where’s steven gerrard, frank lampard, ronaldinho??

  • Rudeshark

    @Pearlytom – Gerrard wouldn’t be in the top 1000. Let’s see him perform for his country first. Oh, and a top club too.

    Maradona would be no 1 for me. Just for his second goal against England in 1986.

  • b3to

    Where is Hugo Sanchez??? No one can score like he did… Eusebio?? George Best??? Maldini??? Roberto Baggio??? Romario??? Stoichkov??? Higuita???

  • acsEx

    Christiano Ronaldo the Best! That F&**ing prick wearing yellow will never be better than the Ronaldo thats wears red!

  • Spurs8FACups

    Wheres Ossie Ardilles, best defensive midfielder ever haha!

    Ok seriously, Maradonna best ever because he won the world cup single handedly. Where the hell is George Best?? Zidane is an asshole, Beckham is an overated pile of piss and Ollie Khan…enough sed haha!!

    Where are Socrates, Rivelino, Garrincha, Tostao, DiStephano, Van Basten, Bobby Moore, Dixie Dean, Charlton, Schmeichel, Matthews, Puskas, Zoff, banks??? The list goes on, any others?

    How can some of your choices live up to these. I also hate Cristiano but theres no denying his quality, but have to wait some years before seeing if he can be likened to these legends!

  • Mark

    403. acsEx : Yes, he will be, as a matter of fact he already is – and always had been – you United supporting SOB :p

    404. Spurs8FACups : Spurs o.O hardly in a position to be debating football after spending the first half of the season in the relegation zone, aren’t you?

  • Spurs8FACups

    I can’t argue with that Mark, but I can safely say I’m no glory hunter. I think the players I listed deserve to be mentioned!!

  • Mark

    406. Spurs8FACups : Still perplexed as to why you don’t think Oliver Kahn deserves a spot…

  • ninnininninininininini

    zidan was pretty amazin

  • malcolm

    i agree with this list completely,and i love all those players very much all of them.i haven’t seen pele or maradona play much but zidane for me is number one any day
    when ever zidane is playing the atmosphere is unbelievable the beauty he brings to this game is unmatched he has an extraordinary charisma,i had the pleasure to watch him play live one time and it was the best 90 minutes of my life.that day he scored the greatest goal i believe in football history, 2002 champions league final in glasgow,it had all the ingridients great occassion,great player,and an astonishing finish. thank zizou i will never forget merciiiiii zizou ….

  • vosty

    zidane with me that is the best position he can be given coz to me his just a pro in his own world

  • billthedrummer

    i am really annmoyed that you put in david beckham, instead of, say Bobby charlton or Gordon Banks, david beckham! all he has done is get booted off the 1998 world cup, true he did score several times in world cup matches and scored one of the most over rated penalties ever, but how many times has he mucked it up, i lik ehim no doubt good player over all but compared to a proper ritish football player! Like gordon banks! He was one of th egreatest keepers of all time, shame he had to go lose an eye . . .and atleast Bobby Charlton won us the world cup against Germany! David Beckham, Pfft . . . pele is the ali of football no comparison against zidane . . .

  • Malcolm II

    Dear Friend, I respect your opinion 100% but there are some players that are not good enough to make it with the top 20 footballers of all times. first of all i will choose players that are retired or on the verge of retirement not players in their mid carrier and after the world war. so you have good point because this list are like that. messi,ronaldo and more young talented players cannot be in the list tough i strongly beleive they will be later on.

    this is my list enjoy!!

    No: 19 LEV YASHIN
    No: 17 EUSEBIO
    No: 16 BOBBY MOORE
    No: 13 RYAN GIGGS
    No: 2 PELE

    there are some more players that deserve to be here but for me the above are the creme delle creme.
    any comments feel free

  • asas

    maldini should be first

  • Ni

    Overall the list isn’t bad but there a few in there that i cant understand. For example, Thuram is a great player but there are plenty centre backs who are much more deserving of a place on the list i.e Baresi, Maldini, Moore, Passarella…Another inclusion that has me pickled is Recoba. Why? I would struggle to fit him into a top 100 list, average player, never done anything in his career. Raul at no. 10 i cant agree with either, again a great player but nowhere near top 10, Id even say Henry and RvN are better but i wouldnt include them in a top 10 either. In the end i guess its a matter of opinion and still a very intresting list. Here is my top 20:

    18.Gerd Muller
    16.Van Basten
    10.Lev Yashin
    7.Di Stefano

  • Nik_Dut

    Obviously, u’re not a football lover, coz, those who loves football must love Roberto Baggio.

    And Zizou on top list ? LOL.

  • Ni

    All time dream team:


    Cruyff___ ___Maradona




    Subs: Kahn
    Di Stefano

  • slick

    were the f*** is stevie g n torres its
    all about them lot :) :) :) :) :) :):)

  • šeste


    1.Michael Laudrup
    2.Dennis Bergkamp
    3.Michel Platini
    4.Franz Beckenbauer
    5.Zinedine Zidane
    6.Johan Cruyff
    7.Roberto Baggio
    8.Marco Van Basten
    9.Andrij Shevchenko
    10.Lothar Matthaus
    11.Ferenc Puskas
    12.Gianni Rivera
    13.Alessandro Del Piero
    14.Karl Heinz Rummenigge
    15.Preben Elkjaer
    16.Thiery Henry
    17.Kevin Keegan
    18.Bobby Charlton
    19.Gonzalez Raul
    20.Chris Waddle

  • daniel

    terrible list

    that is a real list:
    12-Bob charlton
    9-Van Basten
    4-Di steffano

  • canariesfan

    zizou and ronaldo are the greatest players of my generation

  • lrigD

    Well, I don’t know much about soccer, but this list definitely riled me up (which is a good thing considering I’m going to AZ-Ado Den Haag tonight).

    I was kinda proud to notice almost everybody puts Cruyff at number 4. Makes me feel proud of my little country!

    Since I don’t know much about soccer, I don’t know if you included keepers (I think not). But I just wanted to mention Edwin van der Sar since he is a great keeper (who unfortunately stopped…)

  • Kapera

    I’m sorry my mouth is so filthy, but..

  • InfeaNO

    Steve Gerrard?
    George Best?
    “King” Kenny Dalglish!?!?

  • Shawn

    Cristiano Ronaldo should be on the list, he is definitely better than some of these guys..

  • Snider

    yall all no dat pele was the best player in the world of football……Known as the king of football…i would say dat maradona is second…..then hugo sanchez….


    1.- PELÉ
    2.- MARADONA
    3.- PLATINI
    6.- VAN BASTEN
    7.- ROMARIO
    9.- CANTONA
    10.- GARRINCHA


    VIVA MÉXICO!!!!!!!!!

  • louisfootball

    Best Players of all time:

    1. Pele
    2. Diego Maradona
    3. Johan Cruyff
    4. Alfredo Di Stefano
    5. Franz Beckenbauer
    6. Ferenc Puskas
    7. Garrincha
    8. Juan Schiaffino
    9. Zinedine Zidane
    10. Michel Platini
    11. Ronaldo Nazario
    12. Eusebio Da Silva
    13. Zico
    14. Marco Van Basten
    15. Gianni Rivera
    16. Teofilo Cubillas
    17. Romario de Souza
    18. Gerd Muller
    19. George Best
    20. Didi

  • duncan

    Thierry Henry definately should be on none of this beckham crap,
    1 – Pele
    2 – Maradona
    3 – Best
    4 – Zidane
    5 – Cruyff
    6 – Beckenbauer
    7 – Cantona
    8 – Platini
    9 – Van Basten
    10 – Zola
    11 – Bergkamp
    12 – Henry
    13 – Gerrard
    14 – Zico
    15 – Eusebio
    16 – Cafu
    17 – Kaka
    18 – Ronaldo
    19 – C.Ronaldo
    20 – Schmeichel

  • bobbyakatc

    Why did you call it football? Do they call it Football in the UK or something, instead of SOCCER? Why not kickball instead? Cus there is only one real Football and thats the NFL baby! You need to start a top ten QB, RB, and WR. Or even more positions, that’ll be great and should receive some publicity.

  • shizenhouzen

    Pele, should be number 1.

  • James-Irish

    Where is George Best!!!! Pele recognised him as the best player!!!!!! sorry mate but its a joke hes not in it, best player of all time.

  • James-Irish

    Oh yea and to the people saying they call it SOCCER…Its older sport than AMERICAN football, it was created first.
    Oh yea, and every other country in the world calls it football, even when its translated
    German – Fussball Fuus=foot Ball=ball
    Spanish – Fotball, does what it says on the tin.

    why doesnt america just grow a set of balls and take up rugby, better sport, and stop wearing 7 inches of armour, its sport not feckin war!

  • bobbyakatc

    American Football is the best sport in the world. Rugby sounds as gay as the UK accent mate! LOL OMG cant believe he said RUGBY….. sound like a gay ass sport to all Americans. RUGBY…. hahaha… rubgy… ruby ruby…. hahaha No wonder nobody likes that sry sport….BTW Bisping gonna get KO just like Hatton did on the turnbuckle…..hahahaha

  • bobbyakatc

    So what is Soccer in the UK? If its not soccer than what is it. Why call it football when it is called soccer? Thats how confuse the UK is. Look up Football and look up Soccer and u’ll no what is what. Football is in America the best country in the world with the best sport in the world. Soccer is for mexicans like ya. haha

  • andy

    A lot of people may disagree on the list you have shown but they will also disagree on My top 10 which would be:

    1. Pele
    2. Cruyff
    3. Maradona
    4. Beckenbauer
    5. Best
    6. Zidane
    7. Di Stefano
    8. Yashin
    9. Puskas

  • andy

    And I have been reading most comments above and I am very dissapointed with what the other Americans have been saying.


  • andy


  • callie_

    ^ whoa.

  • bobbyakatc

    Andy- go look it up in your ENGLISH dictionary than….Football is our sport, and the sport you and your dumb people like is called …… SOCCER! HAHA LOSER….. soccer sux

  • Mark

    438. callie_ : I know, talk about feeding the trolls…

  • Struth

    The word Soccer comes from Association Football. It developed when some clubs split from the Association to form the the Rugby Football Union (circa 1871), which was also known as Rugger. So football is a generic term which depending on your geographic location could mean any number of games. That is probably why Socce,r being the most popular sport in the world, is commonly known as fooball.

    As for the troll bobbyakatc, you’d wet your little knickers if you had to play a game of rugby. No padding, no helmets, no breaks after 15 seconds of play, no steroids, no “special” teams, no resting on the bench while the “offfensive” takes the field etc.

  • bobbyakatc

    Rugby is so GAY! Why no helmets and no pads, there dummies are just out there to get hurt! haha…. Rugby is the gayest sport ever, thats why nobody cares for it. There needs to be a list of the TOP TEN gayest sports, Rugby is #1. Then soccer. haha…..HOW BOUT TOP TEN SPORTS FIGURE. BET NO SOCCER PLAYER IS UP THERE….I ONLY KNOW OF DAVID BECHAM AND ITS NOT BECAUSE Of SOCCER. TELL ME IF YOUVE HEARD OF joe montana, micheal jordan, barry bonds? The biggest name in sports are here in the U.S. UK got nobody but Rugby guys….hahahaha rugby what… never heard of it…..hahaha OMG rugby!

  • Benj

    why is the american so bothered about the name of certain sports? you say tom-ay-to, i see tom-ah-to, don’t make a big thing of it, it’s just pathetic.

  • Mark

    Struth and Benj stop feeding the troll please, he’s only going to come back if you continue to indulge him.

    “Haha, they get angry ‘cos I smarter, ugh ugh ugh…”

  • Benj

    by the way mate
    who plays baseball? USA & Canada
    who plays “football” (american version)? USA
    they’re your main sports
    who plays football (rest of the world version)? the whole of the world (mainly Europe & South America)
    who plays rugby? England, France, most Australasian countries, South Africa, Italy, Argentina, Ireland, Scotland, Wales etc…

    i think the trend is American based sports are only popular in North America, therefore making it unpopular and shite for the rest of the world.

  • Mark

    445. Benj : Stop feeding and I’m Australian and I like baseball… It’s not that shite, it’s just what they like. Don’t judge North American sports on what a troll on LV says, they can be quite enjoyable.

  • bobbyakatc

    Why is rugby called rugby? Why is Boxing, boxing? shouldnt it be called punching; then? Football is called football because the length of the ball is a foot long. (for your information.) Soccer should be called kickball. And quit being so offended because you already know there is Football; in USA. and the whole world refers your sports as soccer. World cup soccer; right? not world cup Football. IdY Ites!

  • cymraegbachgen87

    447 – “the whole world refers your sports as soccer”

    I would love to see the stats for this. France and Germany both translate as football (football and fussball respectively – so that makes your statement wrong)

    To my knowledge its just the americans who struggle with this. It is the FOOTBALL world cup.

    Fifa – the sports governing body – stands for Fédération Internationale de Football Association.

    Rugby is called rugby (allegedly) because of the city in England where it was first played. And technically its called Rugby Football.

    Boxing is from the verb to box, i.e to hit with the fist. (for your information)


  • cymraegbachgen87

    441 Struth – I agree. Had this argument with some americans on the top 10 international Rugby Teams list.

    Rugby is a real mans game.

  • Struth

    Sorry Mark (444). I’m a bit of a newbie, I should of guessed I’d just be encouraging it.

  • MarkL

    448. cymraegbachgen87 : Can I have a bag of troll food too?

    I thought the name Rugby came from the school, am I mistaken there? Because obviously I’m just a tad further from the source than you ;)

  • MarkL

    450. Struth : Don’t worry about it, even cym can’t help himself with this tool :)

    Arsenal’s gonna win in Europe this season, Chelsea will win The Cup and Liverpool’s in for the League. It’ll be sweet – Arsenal fan, right here :D

    Oh and cym, I’ve always thought of rugby as more of a “homo mans’s game”. *runs far and fast*

  • JayDale09

    Top twenty should clearly be….

    1) Titus Shambles
    2) Francis Jeffers
    3) Nigel Quashie
    4) Gary Doherty
    5) Hugo Viana
    6) Darren Bent
    7) Lucas Leiva
    8) David James
    9) Djemba Djemba
    10) Bosko Balaban
    11) Sergi Rebrov
    12) Massimo Taibi
    13) Marco Boogers
    14) Darren Peacock
    15) Jean-Alain Boumsong
    16) Luke Chadwick
    17) Salif Diao
    18) Ramon Vega
    19) John O’ Shea
    20) Igors Stepanovs

    your thoughts please!

  • JayDale09

    Also for Franz Beckenbauer they say ‘He is credited with inventing the modern attacking sweeper position.’ errm since when was sweeper an ATTACKING position may I ask. Typical Americans…

  • Mark

    454. JayDale09 : Piss off! I’m not joking, that was an insanely stupid and derogerory comment. Sweepers are commonly used as counterATTACKING players, so that’s when sweeper started being an attacking position, AT ITS INCEPTION.

    “Typical Americans…”,

    a) An American would call it Soccer

    b) You are a bigoted idiot

    c) His nickname is raul, are you retarded?

  • Mark

    Whoops, I guess I look a bit stoopid now :D

    First line should read – “454. JayDale09 : Piss off! I’m not joking, that was an insanely stupid and derogetory…”

  • Ingvarillo

    Where is Eric Cantona?? The most carismatic player of all times.

  • Serdar

    There is Pele and others
    Then other are divided as “Messi and others”

  • David F.

    What about Ferenc Puskas,the most famous Hungarian football player ever?

  • ares

    Recoba :))… that a joke????????????? Messi, Kaka, Cristiano Ronaldo are ten times better

  • alfadi

    1-zidane 2-maradona 3-pele 4-kruyf 5-becknbauer 6-ronaldo 7-di stefano 8- buskas 9-messi 10-crstiano ronaldo

  • fadio

    yes i agrre with first tree player zidan and maradona and pele

  • Clemen

    Jaydale09: John O’Shea doesn’t belong on that list.

  • dionysus

    have you ever heard of Gheorghe Hagi? he should be in top15.
    Hagi is better than recoba

  • vosty

    Pele, maradona platini,zidan high class players the world has ever seen this for should just be among the top Christiano ronaldo to me should be at the bottom of the list no one should put him among the top best players coz even messi is far better than him.

  • Conor Quigley

    are you having a laugh?? have you seen what talent there recently is and just passed? beckham is nowere near the likes of best, shearer, C.Ronaldo, ronaldinho etc.. the only way u can compare this is by looking at individual awards on world player of the year and european player of the year…

    Zidane,Ronaldo(Brazil) and ronaldinho are the best 3 players of our generation having won that status 3 times each! so many players missing?? george weah?? romario?? rivaldo??

  • 453. JayDale09

  • Arman

    Lampard & kaka & ronaldinho & messi should be there !!

  • Manne

    Maradona should in my opinion be number 1. he carried his teams on his back. both peles and zidanes teammates were some of the best players in the world.

  • dstmason

    WTF list is that? where is marco van basten? players like raul/recoba wouldnt even be in the top 100 never mind the top 10 and no george best or kenny daglish? who ever made this article knows nothign about football.

    1 PELE
    4 CRUYFF

  • johngunner

    Certainly, Zizou is the greatest footballer I have ever seen. And there is no doubt about that.

    Up Zenedin Ziden

  • Benitezz

    According to me,these should clearly be the all-ever top twenty football players:
    1 Steven Gerrard
    2 Fernando Torres
    3 Ian Rush
    4 John Barnes
    5 Kenny Dalgish
    6 Jamie Carragher
    7 Michael Owen
    8 Robbie Fowler
    9 Dirk Kuyt
    10 Steve mcmanaman
    11 Grobelard
    12 Sami Hypia
    13 Xabi Alonso
    14 Dietmar Hamann
    15 John Arne Riise
    16 Javier Mascherano
    17 Vladmir Smicer
    18 Pepe Reina
    19 Benayoon
    20 Jerzy Dudek

  • kiwiboi

    Benitezz – what…no Sammy Lee? or John Toshack? and so on and so on…

    There’s no escaping you scousers!

    You should support a real football team – the mightly Fulham FC, for example :)

  • $p1NX4kii

    0.Beckham hell no Son.
    1.Zidane hell no Son.
    2.This list Sucks.
    3.Lionel Messi should be There.
    4.Cristiano Ronaldo should be There.
    5.Do another list..:D

  • zack

    1.zack gudle
    2.cristiano Ronaldo
    4.Damiel degans
    thats the top ten best soccer players

  • EdSeba

    it is a great list of footballers over the decade, but dont get me wrong my american friends, i feel you guys should learn to call this game football instead of soccer. its more prominent plus it was introduced to the world as football not soccer my friends.other than that, superb list of greatest football players in the history but i will have to agree that ronaldinho should be included and also a list of other players.

    much love
    cheerS =)

  • shyirambere

    Hi, I`m agree with your top 20 players of all time, and I think every might congratulate you for this job you`ve done for us. Now I want to ask you 20 national teams of all time .Thanks

  • Omar

    These are my top 20 (Since 1993 – the year I got into football).
    1. Zidane 2. Ronaldo 3. Rivaldo 4. Stoitchkov 5. R Baggio 6. Maldini 7. Seedorf 8. Ronaldinho 9. Scholes 10. Berasi 11. C. Ronaldo 12. Kaka 13. Messi 14. Gerrard 15. Cantona 16. Henry 17. Zola 18. Carlos 19. Keane 20. Del Piero.

  • KF

    This list is so retarded and so biased that i just have no comment.

  • KF

    Wheres George Best(top 3 atleast), Charlton, giggs, C.Ronaldo, Henry, Ronaldinho they are far better players than Raul or Di Stefano!!! I’m honestly baffeled by the shere ignorance of ur selection. Have u even heard of MALDIN!!!!! f??k sake!!

  • chif

    brazilian ronaldo better than cristiano, i mean he won world player of the year three times
    rivaldo and makalele were way better than beckham.
    whats zico doing at 16.

  • B. Oddie

    a few too many blacks

  • B. Oddie

    hahaha, just joking. should include best, baresi, maldini, van basten and messi

  • not so great

    by saying the greatest player in history, wouldn’t that make him #1? i’m sure people have already commented on this. as a side note, people tend to remember players from their recent history, forgetting the great ones.

  • Rich

    To all the people that have thought the following deserve a place: C.Ronaldo, Rooney, Gerrard, Terry, Cech, Ferdinand, Vidic and other random players. I think you have no knowledge of football. I myself am only 16 but I realise that there were a lot of much greater players in history. C Ronaldo is good and maybe one day he will be a legend but he has yet to mature really.

    From the years I have watched football, I have only seen 4 really great players; Zidane, Henry, Ronaldo(brazil) and possibly Berkhamp. No, im neither French or an Arsenal fan.
    Maybe c.ronaldo, Messi, Kaka will become alltime greats but they so far have just shown technical ability nothing more.
    Maybe players like C

  • Anshul

    fuck off!!!!

  • Golden-boy

    Mark van basten is missing!

  • Morten

    Where’s Cantona, George Best, CR7, Schmeichel, Messi, Laudrup and Maldini? Raul, Thuram, Beckham, Recoba and Kahn should not be on the list.

  • southsuper

    Glad to see Roberto Carlos on here!

  • gonzalo

    american football is marketing.
    Maradona ande Pele ahead of Zidane.. Even Platini ahead of zidane.
    This is so stupid.

  • Mike

    It’s hard to comprehend how much dick this list sucks.

  • AAX

    1. Diego MARADONA (Most DRAMATIC footballing GENIUS)
    1. Johann CRUIJFF (Most COMPLETE footballing PROFESSIONAL)
    4. Zinedine ZIDANE (Most INFLUENTIAL match DECIDER)
    5. Michele PLATINI (Arguably best PLAYMAKER to date)
    6. Franz BECKENBAUER (Arguably best DEFENDER to date)
    7. Alfredo DI STEFANO (The FIRST LEGEND)
    8. RONALDO (2 times World Cup WINNER All Time SCORER)
    9. ZICO (Best combination of INTELLIGENCE and TALENT)
    10. … ??? … !
    Best ALL TIME GREAT Goalkeeper
    11. Peter SCHMEICHEL (Won Denmark’s fairytale ’92 EUROCUP)

  • AAX


  • Lol

    Pele number 2?!?!?! That’s a joke right?! Pele is the GOD of football. LOL nice list.

  • Gabriel

    God Damn it!
    Half of this list is fail!

    I can name at least 20 players that should have made this list. I could also make a Brazilian only list better than this one.

  • nick

    To be honest, you can’t have any current players on the list because it is too hard to judge their historical impact. C.Ronaldo, Messi and all other current players may be among the greats some day, but neither of them has been at the top of the world for more than 5 years. Questionable inclusions: Thuram, R.Carlos, Kahn, Recoba???, Koeman???, figo, Raul, Muller, Beckham (wouldn’t make top 200)
    People Missing: Banks, Sir Stanley Matthews, Charlton, Eusebio, Garrincha, Moore, Best, PUSKAS!!!
    Top five should read
    1. Pele
    2. Maradona
    3. Cruyff
    4. Di Stefano
    5. Puskas

  • Iakhovas

    Have to agree with most of the comments here. Pretty much every list of greats will have Maradona/Pele at 1 and 2. And to all who say Messi should be on here (and I am a HUGE Barcelona fan), he is way too young. In 10 years, I am almost certain he will make a list like this, but he is only 22!!
    And anyone who wants Christiano Ronaldo on this list, well I think being a Grade-A cock sucker disqualifies you for life.

  • Maddie

    Zlatan Ibrahimovic should be on this, if not for his skills then for his fun way of playing the game. seen the goals he does with his heel? magical.

    i´m not really a sportsfan, but he does make football a whole lot more fun i tell you! (and i mean of course the real football where you kick a BALL with your FOOT and don’t run around with in in your hands)

  • ThatOneGuy

    personal choice is zidane at number one realistacly pele should be maradona should be off the list ive watched his run that was considered the best ever and his other skills….running straight at crappy defenders who freak out and move out of the way shouldnt qualafy as a great run. one thats better then maradonas was Theo Walcotts run against liverpool in last years champions league that was unreal. and christiano ranoldo should be banned from the sport for being a straight up crying little baby when the ref doesnt give him the ball he gets flustered and starts doing horrible. while not quite on the list eventually once thierry henry retires he should be included or on the fringe in his prime i dont think any striker was quite as feared as henry was he did what he wanted when he wanted to who he wanted to

  • Jeff

    1) Maradona
    2) Pele
    3) George Best
    4) Di Stefano
    5) Messi
    6) Zidane
    7) Kaka
    8) Ronaldo

    That’s how it is guys.. you can’t argue.. Pele doesn’t compare to Maradona.. and in a few years Messi will be at the top of this list

  • linda

    see, when you’re from america you always think football mean american football. i was confused. but i actually like soccer more than american football

  • eddy

    for me the best 20:
    1 pele
    2 puskas
    3 maradona
    4 hagi
    5 ronaldo
    6 del piero
    7 zidane
    8 eusebio
    9 batistuta
    10 maldini
    11 stoichkov
    12 bagio
    13 figo
    14 shearer
    15 cruyff
    16 platini
    17 khan
    18 ravanelli
    19 louis enrique
    20 sukur

  • rodrigo

    1 maradona

    you dont know nothing about football


    Beckham?? you must not watch football your basing him on his popularity, true he may be a good team player but not in the 50 all tme greatest players its pretty disgraceful having him in instead of PUSKAS, GARRINCHA, MATHAUS, VAN BASTEN,JAIRZINHO,STOICHKOV,FONTAINE,BARESI,BONIEK,PAPIN who all have done things beckham couldnt do for his dinner. but besides him and recoba its a good list

  • esubuez

    what a rubbish list wheres george best pele at no2 and wheres cafu

  • iz scoot

    go zizo
    i hate maradona he is crap at soccer i am better than him i am gd as
    i think iam the best

  • coxzone

    … Johann Cruyff is THE number one player EVER, a genius who singlehandedly changed the game to how it is played rightnow.

  • red devils

    where is J.Best…….maradona is the best player all time

  • GG

    Jari Litmanen aka The King!

  • Agassi

    First, i agree with the top 3 but not in that order.

    3. Zidane
    2. Diego Maradona
    1. Pele

    I would take out most of the rest of the 17. I mean come on, Beckham? Really? This list was made by someone who loves soccer but doesnt know anything about it. But someone already said it “This list is too American”

  • Eric

    this is based on popularity and is very current. all of the players can bee seen on TV or clips from the net. how about players before the era of television? example is Paulino Alcantara of Barcelona who led them on their 1st golden age in football. imagine 357 goals in 357 games, it is not easy to have a 1 is to 1 ratio of goals in games played in mediocre do much so if it is a team like FC Barcelona. and he is the first Asian (filipino) player to play at europe. what can beckham (my fave player FYI)say about that?

  • Eric


    this is based on popularity and is very current. all of the players can bee seen on TV or clips from the net. how about players before the era of television? example is Paulino Alcantara of Barcelona who led them on their 1st golden age in football. imagine 357 goals in 357 games, it is not easy to have a 1 is to 1 ratio of goals to games played in mediocre leagues or teams so much so if it is a team like FC Barcelona. and he is the first Asian (filipino) player to play at europe. what can beckham (my fave player FYI)say about that?

  • Michael

    Nice Exept for No George Best!?!

  • Norman

    Di Stefano should be top. The most complete player to ever play the game. Also George Best should be in the top ten, not to mention the fact that a lot of these player shouldn’t even get into the top 100 football players of all time, nevermind top twenty.

  • archiealt

    Just terrible. A truly woeful list. Thuram but no Best, really, REALLY.

  • fadi

    it a bet right …. 1-pele 2- maradona 3-zidane 4-cruyff 5-de stefano 6-puskas 7-eusebio 8-platini 9-bagio 10-marco van pasten

  • fadi

    zidane .s, very good player and never franc will get one like hem …. mardona and pele and zizou they are the best of all time

  • Thompa

    you have so many mediocre players in this list and have missed out many greats

  • Harrington

    Any soccer list that claims to be greatest of all time and Pele isn’t number 1 deserves to be accompanied with an Asterisk. David Beckham has no right to be on this list. Raul at 10 is foolish. no Best? Charlton? I don’t know man, might take me a week or more to get over you having Zidane ahead of Pele.

  • Sanja22

    where is kaka in this list????
    And pele should be one, because the world see him as number one, no one see Zizou like that!

  • Belico

    What about Friedenreich, bebeto, romario, zizinho, batistuta, hugo sanchez, van basten, pibe valderrama and it goes on and on.

    Just who the hell made this list…(must have been an american)

  • anon

    crap list

  • hinkle von dinkle

    where is van basten on this list, and why the hell is zidane number 1? whoever wrote this list up clearly has no real idea about football, if they did they would not have been so stupid as to put zico behing fucking koeman

  • Lucas Costa

    Truly, truly atrocious list!

    I mean, I can only imagine that this list was made by an american, who has never, ever read up on football history…

    There are way too many ommissions to point out, players like Garrincha, Van Basten, Romário, Baresi, Maldini, Puskas, Bobby Charlton, Bobby Moore, George Best, etc, etc, etc. I think that most football fans would agree that out of your 20 players, only 11 would deserve a spot in a top-20 list (Zizou, Pelé, Maradona, Beckembauer, Cruyff, Ronaldo, Platini, di Stefano, Yashin, Zico and Roberto Carlos). And most of those players would not be in the top-10.

    And to place Zizou ahead of Pelé/Maradona.

    I mean, unbelievable…

  • ll

    Pele and maradona are the best because of their performances in the World Cup.

  • Miguel Dias

    this list really sucks this list is made by a stupid guy from america that think its more inporatant the tittles that a good player. Where is Eusébio? Where is Kaká? Where is Leonel Messi? Where is Cristiano Ronaldo? Where is Stevan Gerard. you putt recoba, ronald koeman and Lilian Thuran in list you must be crazy man!

  • diego

    man, c´mon, are you brainless?? i mean this in a good way, because maybe you are in fact retarded and therefore we couldn´t insult you for your childish lack of knowledge. a true football fan would disagree in at least 14 of your choices. you are as wrong as you could possible be. zidane num 1?, thuram in the list? raul? khan? where the hell are van basten, george best, cristiano ronaldo, baggio, romario, garrincha, eusebio. man, you are an absolut ignorant of the game.

  • Tsasaa

    My Top 20 List (It’s wonderful List!!!)

    1. Pele
    2. Zinedine Zidane
    3. Diego Maradona
    4. Franz Beckenbauer
    5. Michael Platini
    6. Raul Gonzalez
    7. George Best
    8. Lev Yashin (goalkeeper)
    9. Ronaldinho
    10. Cristiano Ronaldo
    11. Ronaldo
    12. Peter Cech (goalkeeper)
    13. Roberto Carlos
    14. Kaka
    15. Steven Gerard
    16. Thierry Henry
    17. Oliver Kahn (goalkeeper)
    18. Luis Figo
    19. David Beckham
    20. Zico

  • John

    Messi? Kaka? Where are they? Messi is the best ever!!

  • nakamura

    Messi best? where?? Pele is better than all of them

  • me


    how about garrincha?stevie g?david villa?c ronaldo?messi?kaka?RONALDINHO?????

    and zidane infront of pele???????i think im going nuts

  • lb

    WHERE IS RONALDINHO??WhicH FooL made this list

  • Keyshawn

    Henry is the greatest frenchman ever he should be here for sure

  • David

    It saddens me that Eusébio is still a little unknown, many people dont count him.. You should go see some videos on youtube, there are few, but some show some really espetacular skills. He is from the same time as Pele, more or less, but he was, in my opinion better.

    He deserves a top 5, enourmous speed, and even bigger shot. To bad he didn’t do over 1000 goals, his first years goals on professional football before going to benfica weren’t counted and he also had to end his carrier a little earlier than others do, so he only managed around 800 goals.

  • David

    Forgot to mention. Portugal little country managed to eliminate Brazil on the World Cup (in 66 if i remember correctly) with Eusébio’s help, altough we didn’t win (England was at home, they had some helps, altough i dont want to take credit from them, but it’s true).

  • Marco Van Basten

    … i’m with AAX order;
    exept Johan Cruyff on place 1A and Diego Maradona 1B
    rest correct … although i think i also deserve a place in the top 10 …

  • sab

    u are more dan right (dat is goooooooooooooooooood of u) d greatest list ever.

  • Mosca

    If you know anything about football you would know that the best player in the history of the most beutiful sport in the world is either Maradona or Pelé.

    This list is ridiculous.

  • welldone

    If u do a thorough analysis on the game u will end up with zidane at 1.
    It is good to see that you have put him at no 1.(Many are afraid to do so)

  • Steve

    For once a list that doesn’t look like it was made by an English guy and is not biased, great list, true list, honest list, wouldn’t change a thing…

  • nash

    I don’t know if Zizou is in fact the greatest ever, but why not? In my opinion, he stands a little bit above Maradona, for the former was a complete player, whereas Maradona sole-footed, albeit the best left-footed player ever. As to Pele, i think he is the best of all, a little bit above Zidane

  • nash

    If we analyze things through, considering only skills and facts on the pitch -and nothing else- we come to the conclusion that the most complete players in history are Pele and Zidane. Maradona was majestic, of course, but sole-footed…

  • Steve

    Of course Zidane is first he made his teams better and was the most influential player of the past century, champions league check, world cup check, European cup check …
    Just watch the game !!!
    Pelé was also fantastic and for me he stands up there too difficult to compare it was a different time !
    Many people criticize Thuram (probably they never saw him play when he was a the top just youtube him guys). Also praise Gerrard or CR forget it guys they didn’t achieve anything they aren’t dominating, the only current player that deserves to be in this list is Messi.

  • nash

    Once again…Pele was the greatest because of his exceptional achievements in world cup, as well as for his completeness as to football skills. So, i think, is Zidane, who also performed inconceivable skills, by way of playing football with his hands…My personal all-time list

    di stefano
    from there on, in random order, Yascin, Cannavaro, Maldini, R. Baggio, Ronaldo Nazario,Van Basten,Omar, Zoff, Sivori, Thyram, and -to be estimated-Messi

  • Pele

    … Cruyff is the KING of football okay. period.
    you GOTTO be kidding putting Zidane on 1, no more than a short lived star; no personality ! no influence on the game, no legend, nothing !

  • nash

    believe me, u have no idea about football saying that. No influence on the game?lol………..all these tricks u see today by kids such asw cr. ronaldo, come from Zidane unique way of playing… No legend? this is much more funny……….The man who finally put France officially on the map of world great national teams. The man who even overshadowed a national’s team win, by his inexcusable behaviour against Materazzi. Be serious, lad…

  • lunigi

    And Eusebio?

  • tjhttjhyi

    I can think of loads of players that should be on there that aren’t like Bobby Charlton, Bobby Moore, Gordan Banks, Gary Lineker, Gazza, Ronaldinho, Cristiano Ronaldo, Messi or Ruud Van Nistelrooy.

  • nash

    As we all know, it is World Cup that crowns the greats of the game. So, except for B. Charlton or B. Moore, -Ronaldinho has shown amost nothing so far in World Cups-no player from those you mentioned deserve to be estimated so higly, so as to belong to such a limited list

  • Smokey

    6:Alfredo Di Stefano

    Fuck u haters, how cud u leave out the best striker of ol time, il Fenomeno, the real Ronaldo, the king, the number9, i think he deserves to be the 3rd on the list since his personal achievements speak fo himself rather then some losers puttin up garbage together….

  • Yeap

    how about eusebio, cantona, klinsmann, puskas, messi the list can go alot longer.

  • nash

    Cantona? no way. He didn’t participate in a single World Cup..

    Messi is to be estimated in the future…

  • Ryan


    Ronaldo would be at the top if he never suffered those knee injurys.

  • mujo

    David Beckham dose not belong on this list, he should be on a list for the most overrated athletes ever.

  • nash

    I totally agree….

  • naye

    para mi de ve de estar memo ochoa es el
    mejor porteroi el mas sexi viva mexico!!!!

  • dhara


  • Rubens


    Zidane number 1? suhasuhausahs

    Above above Pelé, Cruijff, Maradona???…suahsuahsuahsuahsuahusahsuhaushaushaushaushaushaushaushaushaus…ridiculous!

  • nash

    You don’t know a lot about football, so it is plain why you challenge Zidane’s value and status. Yes, of course he ranks along side the above mentioned players..

  • mario

    no italians! ur tellin me that in the enitre italian history there is not pne italian worthy on this list. Dino should be on this list and also Maldini probably the greatest defender of all time. Buffon in time will be the greatest goalie ever better than Kahn and Yashin.

  • Sylvester(sly)

    Where is George M. Weah from Liberia. What a big shame, David Beckham should not be there instead money maker.

  • Sylvester(sly)

    Where is George M. Weah from Liberia. What a shame,David Beckham should not be on the listing instead money maker.

  • Pingback: Yo Amo Tampico » Blog Archive » Top 10 de los Mejores Futbolistas del Mundo()

  • Sorry to dissapoint u americans.. but, football/soccer was around before american football.. and we had the name football since it started, therfor, the right name for soccer is actually.. “football”, its only americans that call it soccer :P and besides.. american football.. they dont even use there feet, so why not come up with another name xP

    btw.. that pic above.. of ronaldo, is brazilian ronaldo.. and the description is brazilion ronaldo.

    anyways.. cool list :)

  • i agree with mario, italy had some of the best players.. such as nesta, inzaghi, del piero, Cannavaro, maldini.. and more.. there should be italy players on the list.


    I may agree Zidane number 1. I’m my self could say “i knew Pele and maradona’s trick is”, but take me some time to understand zidane’s trick, ended with “couldn’t see it in another player”. Once I have seen Aimar utilize teammates like maradona, and Quaresma dribbles like Maradona(just once, not yet see it again) but never seen zizou’s incredible playmaking. Smoothly sneaking while orchestrating players after trapping the ball beautifully and pass it to teammate, then find their defence like gawk. Have you ever seen the next zizou?
    That is because zizou live in modern soccer. I think maradona and pele will probably troubled penetrating modern defence.

    CF = Pele
    SS = Maradona
    playmaking = zizou
    technique = bald ronald
    passer = platini
    defence = maldini (bullseye anticipation)
    keeper = ??

  • suhail

    i m a no.1 fan of zizo zidane……..
    zizo rocks forever

  • Lionel Messi

    where is Lionel Messi and Christiano Ronaldo

  • nash


  • cool dude

    wtf……..this list sux no cristiano ronaldo dats hell …’s the best player in dis universe idiots

  • omonoia 95

    zidane isnt no 1 i agree he is a very good player but pele maradona and kruyf are better where is gullit van basten kubala rivaldo puskas ronaldinho henry
    this american who had done this awful list is a piece of shit

  • eczeyes

    WORST LIST EVER! Beckham? Kahn? Raul? Gentile? It shows where you are from…

  • nash

    erczeyes, you don’t know anything about football. what a shame you suggest Beckham, or Raul, who haven’t had a single success in the most important competitions of international football.Thw Worst list ever is what YOU propose…

  • Antonis

    I completely disagree with the list. I notice that you mention many modern football players, but you forget the players of the era of the REAL football (1930-1950). For me, the real top 10 list would be:

    1. Leonidas Da Silva (he was the one who was called “Black Pearl” 3 decades before Pele. People who saw both of them playing, said Da Silva was much better)

    2. Pele

    3. Guillermo Stabile

    4. George Best

    5. Ferenc Puskas

    6. Maradona

    7. Platini

    8. Di Stefano

    9. Garrincha

    10. Zidane

  • nash

    Antonis, probably you are Greek, as am I, as well. It’s good that you focused on old players, rather than on ones who are in the middle of their careers, without having won so far an important competition. I disagree, though, with your selections. As we all know, the FIRST criterion by which all football experts use to rank players on such lists, is theeir accomplishments in the World Cup. And many of the players you mentioned have not won a single World Cup. It is a criterion which noone can ignore, after all..

  • jppg

    what happened jorge “magico” gonzales… he is the best football player ever



  • Coll Sham

    No Ronaldinho?? No Van Basten or Bergkamp?? Beckham Roberto Carlos or Thuram do not deserve to be there!! Also, no Rivaldo, Romario, Cafu or Gabriel Batistuta?? Or Hristo Stoichkov?? Needs to be re-examined big time!!

  • ezeyes

    @nash (572):

    Can you read?

    I mention them because they ARE in the list and they don’t deserve a mention.

  • Stoen

    Pele and Maradona are strongly overrated. I would be careful using phrases like “Bessta player ever”. I think “Pioneer” would be more correct. C. Ronaldo is not a complete player like many on this list. Btw I kinda hate him.

  • Tel

    How the Hell can you not have Georgie Best?????
    Best was better than any of these… and I hate MAN UTD so i’m not biased.Have you done your research? Pele said Best was “The Best Player In The World” so Pele was wrong then????
    Have you not seen the goal he scored in America, when he went past the whole team? He was passed it then. The problem was, he played for N.Ireland so never played in the World Cup.I have a game when the LA AZTECS played the mighty Cosmos, and Pele, Alberto nor Beckenbaeur could get the ball off him!!!!
    He is the most skillful, amazing, jaw dropping, player I have ever seen and what was impossible wasn’t anymore. The Greatest Player in History. When he was in hospital,he got a ball sent to him. It was signed ‘To the Greatest player in history- from the second….. Love Pele!

  • Tel

    Having David Beckham in this list is an insult to the truly Great players on the list!
    I have seen Beckham play loads of times and it is always the same. Remember the commentator screaming “Give that man a Knighthood!” when we qualified for the World Cup. Where was Bobby Moore’s Knighthood for being England captain when we WON THE WORLD CUP NOT just qualified!
    A couple of years before, Bobby had testicular cancer and was told, he would never walk again-he did! So he was told he would never kick a ball again-he did! He was told he would never play football again-He did! He captained West Ham and our only World Cup win in ’66!!!
    When he retired, the FA would not even reply to his letters asking for a job!! Why did he not get a Knighthood?

    Beckham is one footed, can’t head, can’t tackle,can’t dribble past players,has no pace,he’s a wimp,he is not a Captain with any passion and fire like Stuart Pearce.All he is decent at is set pieces- free kicks and corners and that’s it.Anyone who knows about football will agree with me.
    If he was ugly and not married to a Spice girl, do you think people would bother with him?
    To put him in a list alongside Best, Pele and Real greats.
    By the way, it’s hard to do but

    1) Pele (Would be George Best, but you can’t argue with 3 World Cups)
    2)George Best (If only he played for a strong nation!)
    3)Maradona (Pretty Much won the ’86 cup on his own)
    4)Cruyff (Wonderful to watch)
    5)Zidane (Complete player)
    6)Jairzinho (Pele’s partner in the greatest team ever, the 1970 Brazil team)
    7) Garrincha (1962 World Cup top scorer .Pele got injured, Garrincha played for 2)

    8)Geoff Hurst (Very underrated, still only man to score a Hat-trick in a WC Final)
    9) Gerd Muller (Lethal Striker,highest goalscorer in WC)
    10)Eusabio (Killer right foot but a gentlemen
    11)Mario Kempes (Again Lethal)
    12)Ronaldinho (Who would want to be a defender!)
    13)Matthaus (Only one of 2 players to have played 5 WC’s)
    14) Rivelino (3 time winner)
    15) Fontaine (HIghest scorer ever in one WC- 13 in ’58
    16) Bobby Moore (Beat cancer, then beat the German’s)
    17) Alfredo Di Stefano (The Blond Arrow)
    18) Ronaldo (Exactly what did happen before the ’98 final?
    19 Platini (A name that will never be forgotten by football fans)
    20)Tostao (Another Genius from the Brazil ’70 team)
    21)RODNEY MARSH (Don’t worry, I only put him in because he’s my all time Hero! Still, it would of been interesting to see him in a world cup!)
    Best team- Brazil 1970. Best save- Gordon Banks from Pele 1970. Best team Goal- Brazil 1970. Best Solo Goal- Maradona v England 1986. Most promising and exciting new project at the time- The NASL (North American Soccer League) Pele, Beckenbaeur,Alberto, Best, Rodney Marsh,Cruyff,Banks, Osgood, Ball and Hurst were all there in the 70’s but it crumbled.Beckham, it’s already been done fool.

    I notice loads of abuse on here, but unless you include someone really useless.. ie Beckham and that list of people I have never heard of, are they all Americans? then there is no wrong and right.

  • l’etranger23

    too modern oriented maybe? Eusebio, Sir Stanley Matthews, Paolo Maldini, Michel Platini are all missing

  • Tel

    It’s called football mate. It’s called football because you play with a ball at your feet!

    picking up a rugby ball with your HANDS and throwing it and catching it with your hands while wearing a crash helmet is NOT football, it’s crash helmet rugby!!!!!

  • Tel

    EUSABIO and Platini are in mine if that’s what your talking about.
    Stanley Matthews has no place anymore because he was a ‘Hug the touchline’ out and out winger.Now, attacking left or right backs in the Stuart Pearce mould would knock him into space!!! and his supply line would be cut off straight away,he would never get past the half way line now!
    AS for Maldini, I can’t include everyone.Apart from the really stupid ones, it’s all our different opinions that make this topic interesting.

  • nusika

    where is puskas????? :O

  • raif

    here is the real list

    1-diego maradona
    3-carlos alberto torres
    6-zinedine zidane
    7-david beckham
    8-pavel nedved
    9-franc puskas
    10-luis figo
    11-alfredo di stefeno

  • adi

    I don’t think hagi is in top 20 , but definietly was a very good player. [youtube=]

  • Arya

    Ronaldo ( R9 ) is one the best and this list is so true …but i wish i could Ronaldhino and carlos and couple more….

  • Liam

    I have several points to make.

    1) Thuram and Carlos should never make any “all time great list” when you think of the class of defenders such as Franz Beckenbauer and Caesar Maldini.

    2) Zidane is an amazing player but no one in there right mind would put him above Pele.

    3) Where is George Best on the list?

    4) Why is David Beckham on the list and not Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo?

    5) Luis Figo, Paolo Maldini, Caeser Malini, where in the name of gods green earth are they.

    now i am going to put a list on.

    1) Pele
    2) Jairzinho
    3) Cruyff
    4) Caeser Malini
    5) Beckinbauer
    6) Maradona
    7) Best
    8) Matthaus
    9) Platini
    10) Fontaine
    11) Hurst
    12) Matthews
    13) Schmeichel
    14) Chilavert
    15) Van Basten
    16) Fillipo Inzaghi
    17) Eusabio
    18) Messi
    19) Cristiano Ronaldo
    20) Bobby Moore

  • stunner9

    Pretty solid list. However, Eric Cantona and Ryan Giggs both have to at least be ahead of Beckham, Roberto Carlos, and Thuram

  • kalam

    how about ronoldinio??

  • kalam

    kalam rocks

  • Nd

    Everyone in the list are indeed great players of all time but there is only one Soccer god “Jay-Jay Okocha”. Folks, he did not just get this name, he lived it in the field. He single handedly made soccer electrifying to watch. He is soccer maestro amongst all the soccer greats and will certainly make my 20 list.

  • castor7dre

    goddam it you idiots stop calling for cristiano ronaldo or lionel messi. They’re good players, but they’re still young and haven’t really won shit. They both won the champs league, but that doesn’t compare yet to the world cups that “fat ronaldo” won. And obviously this is a list of the top 20 players of ALL time. That of course also means Ronaldo at his best. Like back when he was fast enough to give any team a run for their money. So stfu, thx

  • nash




  • zidane

    i totally agree that zidane should be number 1. it is too hard to conjure up top 20 footballers of all time. players that should be mentioned:
    Ruud Gullitt, Ruud van nistlerooy, geoger best, cantona, bobby charlton, ronaldinho, ronaldo(portugeuse), Rivaldo, batistuta, berkgamp, van basten, baresi, gordon banks etc. the list is just endless. too many good players




    where is trezeguet;


    597-is agood list but not so good ………


    where is barthez;


    Leinad T.Cubillas is NOT so good player like PELE……..


    587-AMAZING GOAL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


    Thuram do NOT play left back,only right!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


    LEV YASHIN IS THE BEST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


    589Liam 1)WHERE IS LEV YASHIN;
    2)1) Pele
    2) Jairzinho
    3) Cruyff
    4) Caeser Malini
    5) Beckinbauer
    6) Maradona
    7) Best
    9) Platini
    10) Fontaine
    11) Hurst
    12) Matthews
    13) Schmeichel
    14) Chilavert
    15) Van Basten
    16) Fillipo Inzaghi
    17) Eusabio
    18) Messi
    19) Cristiano Ronaldo
    20) Bobby Moore


    SEE LIAM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!




    Pele,Beckinbauer,Caeser Malini,Van Basten and Lev Yashin is the first 5!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Jacktheripper

    ALVARO RECOBA???????? Hahahahahahaha

    I think thaht if you try to find any other list of even 100 best players ever you will never find the name of alvaro recoba

    And what’s wrong with you people, the right ronaldo is on the picture…Christiano needs waaaaay more matches to be in this company…

  • Joaquin Pistolero

    I wouldn’t be surprised if they had Beckham as number one.
    This list is a piece of s*** !


    610-Alvaro Recoba needs more goals and assists and MVP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!HAHAHAHA

  • champ

    beckham ahead of van basten, shearer, Gullit…???
    this list is a joke..

  • Leo Butters


    EPIC FAIL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • SaC-pro

    maradona and pele best but similar way my idea is zizo best of all time because he was difference
    good list but no best
    raul and beckham and thuram and kahn and ronald koman and carlos alberto torres are good but we have better
    peter shmikel best goal keeper steven gerrard have every factor for best cmf marco von bosten for center forward for dmf my idea is raikard he was very strong dmf paulo maldini was very good when he was young in defenders for this team i think rwb is better than rb this team should attack :D rwb good for example : cafu, dani(daniel alves) maicon.and CB very strong is stam ,adams , ferdinand ,and very good player for shooting and free kick is stoichkov

  • nash



  • Bakr

    I appreciate you for taking the courage to put Zidane at No 1. Undoubtedly, the best player to ever play football!

  • jadoon

    ZIZOU the best, of course! but his last international game was something marvellous.
    I love him.
    CRISTIANO RONALDO is also an emerging LEGEND

  • M.G.

    Recoba, Ronaldo, Beckham….are football player ?

    to me the best football players years 80-90-00 are:

    1 – Maradona
    2 – Zico
    3 – Van Basten
    4 – Platini
    5 – Baresi

    1 – Baggio
    2 – Ronaldo
    3 – Zidane
    4 – Maldini
    5 – Buffon

    1 – Shevchenko
    2 – Ronaldinho
    3 – Henry
    4 – Messi
    5 – Cristiano Ronaldo

  • therush

    Oh my God this list is so full of fail. No Garrincha, Eusebio, Masopust, Lato, Dalglish, Gerrard, Puskas or Best but you managed to include Carlos, Beckham, Raul, Thuram and Recoba? You should probably try watching football before making a list about football.

  • Peter

    heres my selection:


    __Di Stefano___Platini___



  • z4

    really the first is ronaldo luis nazario de lima n then ronaldinho messi c ronaldo n rooney but ronaldo luis nazario de lima cud not play well bcoz of his injured leg if his leg is fit he cud be the no 1 n ronaldinho cnt play coz he is not dat fit n now 2009 no 1 is messi den c ronaldo

  • nash

    z4, the worst list ever…Probably you refer only to players of the last decade…And, furthermore, you ignore Zidane…LOL

  • whitey

    I must say most of these players are good but (come on )not as good as Charlton, Best,Beckinbauer, and i could go on.To think you would have Thuram,Recoba,carlos, there is a joke i think my .4yr old should be in this list if thats the case.

  • you_f*cking_dance)like_a_white_boy!

    What’s with all the Americans jumping in?

  • rossi46

    you surely forgot about gheorghe hagi

  • The Nigerian Nightmare

    Listen up guys…this guy’s list is was done to cause confusion and start a riot..see as everyone is chopping each others heads off..calm down my people..i have the official list in my hand..The top players must have at least won a world cup or some championship..the list came down from above..yeh i said it, the Lord himself…heard it in a goes…

    1. Pele (Untouchable; could do anything with the ball and could play in any era..played in 50s, 60s, and 70s and won a world cup in each era).
    2. Ronaldo (If not for his knee injuries, who knows what else he could have done; at his peak, unmatchable..all time world cup scorer).
    3. Maradona (El Diego..most talented left footer EVER! Had only one leg though..wasnt as complete a player and who knows if Argentina would have won if he didnt use his hand to score.
    4. Zinedine Zidane (One of the greatest magicians with the ball I have ever seen..has won it name it).
    5. Alfredo Di Stefano (Watched some of his games for Real icon..never played in the world cup unfortnately)
    6. Lev Yashin (Greatest goal keeper of all time..wore all black..had to think thrice to find ways to score..was that good)
    7. Johan Cruyff ( Amazing dutch maestro..came so close to winning the 74 World Cup..Beckanbaur ended that..amazing career with Ajax)
    8) Franz Beckenbaur (Greatest German player EVER! Won it all..Libero! Seeing him play with Pele after their prime was a joy..imagine if both played together during their
    9) Eusebio ( A defender’s of the greatest strikers ever!..amazing career with Portugal and Benfica).
    10) Paolo Maldini (The best left back ever..never won an international trophy but has won all the club trophies)


    Bobby Charlton
    Carlos Alberto

  • you_f*cking_dance)like_a_white_boy!

    627 The Nigerian Nightmare
    lol i’m not sure if you’re actually arrogant or just taking the piss, but yeah. nice list, i think you’ve done it well, but just asking, no Puskas? no Best? but that’s just me.

  • Guile10

    Dejan Savicevic should be in there and recoba should be shot with his own balls of s2it.

  • The Nigerian Nightmare

    I had another dream.The Lord told me I wasnt done..i quickly realized HE was’s top 20!! Revised list…And I swear I am not drunk!

    1. Pele (Untouchable; could do anything with the ball and could play in any era..played in 50s, 60s, and 70s and won a world cup in each era).
    2. Ronaldo (If not for his knee injuries, who knows what else he could have done; at his peak, unmatchable..all time world cup scorer).
    3. Maradona (El Diego..most talented left footer EVER! Had only one leg though..wasnt as complete a player and who knows if Argentina would have won if he didnt use his hand to score.
    4. Zinedine Zidane (One of the greatest magicians with the ball I have ever seen..has won it name it).
    5. Johan Cruyff (Amazing dutch maestro..came so close to winning the 74 World Cup..Beckanbaur ended that..amazing career with Ajax)
    6. Lev Yashin (Greatest goal keeper of all time..wore all black..had to think thrice to find ways to score..was that good)
    7. Alfredo Di Stefano (Watched some of his games for Real icon..never played in the world cup unfortnately)
    8) Franz Beckenbaur (Greatest German player EVER! Won it all..Libero! Seeing him play with Pele after their prime was a joy..imagine if both played together during their
    9) Garrincha (Mane! The Lil Bird..if not for the great Pele, Garrincha woulda been the greatest Brazilian player in his era..could dribble you while holding a keg..2 World cups to his belt!)
    10) Eusebio ( A defender’s nightmare..The greatest striker AFRICA ever produced!..amazing career with Portugal and Benfica).
    11) Paolo Maldini (The best left back ever..never won an international trophy but has won all the club trophies)
    12) Ferenc Puskas (Hungarian boss! Wanna see scary football? Watch he and Di Stefano don the Madrid colors as they dismantle anyone in their path)
    13) George Best (I swear if he had played for England, it woulda been all over for the rest of the world..The best player ever as labeled by Pele himself..Man United’s greatest player of all time)
    14)Zico (The white Pele! Never won a world cup but should have in ’78 and ’82..during his era, Brazil toyed with the world but didnt get it done defensively..maestro with the ball)
    15) Michel Platini (I wish he and Zidane played in the same of the greatest midfielders EVER..if not the greatest..such a debate! If he had won a world cup with France, he woulda surpassed Zidane easily but Zizou won everything)
    16) Bobby Charlton (1966 World Cup icon..Man United legend..superb player)
    17)Roberto Baggio (In my opinion, Italy’s finest player of all time)
    18) Romario (Definitely didnt even score up to 600 goals but he was a nightmare in the penalty area..once he gets the ball there, just pray..1994 WC icon)
    19) Marco Van Basten (As a kid, seeing his strike against Russia in 1988 Euros was a revelation..Pele’s legend made me want to be the best but Van Basten’s strike made me definitely want to be a striker!)
    20) Lothar Matheus (German Libero who at first marked out Maradona in 86 final and then turned out to be one of the best midfielders ever..his display in 1990 WC was phenomenal)

    Carlos Alberto
    Peter Schmeichel
    Franco Baresi
    Gerd Muller
    Thierry Henry
    Bobby Moore
    Stanley Matthews

  • Scratch

    @The Nigerian Nightmare (630):

    You should have written this list. Well done.

  • nash

    Nigerian Nightmare ”Ronaldo (If not for his knee injuries, who knows what else he could have done; at his peak, unmatchable..all time world cup scorer).

    No, man, we can’t make a list based on hypotheses of the form ‘if not….who knows what he could have done). A list is always based on real data, on facts. Otherwise your list is fair.Here is A MORE REVISED LIST


    di stefano
    from there on, in random order, Yascin, Cannavaro, Maldini, R. Baggio, Ronaldo Nazario,Van Basten, Zoff, Sivori, Thyram, and -to be estimated-Messi

  • The Nigerian Nightmare

    @Nash…what I meant by Ronaldo “who knows what he could have done”, was that he could have been the greatest the rate he was scoring, high level of play, invoking mass fear to defenders the night before games, only Pele could have matched that..technically, he has two world cup to his name (On the roster at 17 in 1994 and 2002)..technically, he has been to 3 consecutive world cups (94, 98 and 02)..He was doing all this during this modern era when the life span of greatness is basically 2-3 yrs and then a much as i like Ronaldinho, he was in control for about 2 yrs only and then faded (still good not great)..Messis, Ronaldos, Benzemas all show up during club games but have no stamp internationally..none at all! In fact divine intervention helped Portugal and Argentina make WC ’10..

  • nash

    The greatest player ever in pure technical terms is, according to football cognizants, Zinedine Zidane.He was at at the highest level throughout his ENTIRE carrer. Ronaldo not. Of course, it is possible that he coulad have been so, but, as i said, the world is based on facts, not on hypotheses. And Zidane won everything, among them TWO TIMES Brazil, and thus Ronaldo..

  • The Nigerian Nightmare

    Nash sorry but youre on your own boss…Zidane could not take over a game the way pele, Ronaldo and Maradona did..those guys wre on a different level..they had the “it” factor that could wow you and score goals at crucial moments..Zidane was a wizard with the ball for sure and in his prime a maestro but really came out lucky winning France ’98..Paraguay missed out in beating them in penalties..Italy and Baggio dominated ’em but penalties again and Brazil came out flat in the finals..if Brazil had played well defensively, France would have been done..the Zidane goals were a result of lack of awareness off corner kicks..And no Zidane didnt win WC twice, he did it once…Ronaldo won WC twice and south american championship several times..Ronaldo’s skill, pace and game deciseveness is unparallelled.

  • nash

    Sorry, but you must read football history before saying the above things which sound at least odd. Zidane not in crucial moments? huhuhuh..The man who peaked exactly at the final…Where your argument is again based on hypotheses of the form ‘.if Brazil had played well defensively…’. Well, come on..Zidane beat Ronaldo twice. And Ronaldo didn’t win the World Cup TWICE, because as a youngster he was ONLY a SUBSTITUTE in 1994. Furthermore, Zidane peaked again in the knock-out stages of EURO 2000. He won again…And then, he once again peaked at the Final of Champions League 2002, with that amazing goal, never seen before or since in a final…And yes, Zidane as a 34 year old, he almost single-handedly in the knock-out stages led France, AGAINST ALL ODDS, and against the fat Ronaldo, in the final, where -on the basis of YOUR hypothical arguments- he would well have beat Italy, had he not been sent-off…Come on, lad.. Your list well, but your arguments about Ronaldo are totally invalid. Ronaldo was a very good player, but mainly a scorer.. Zidane was everything..And above all, a LEADER..Who was at his peak throughout his ENTIRE carrer. And, finally, the players you mentioned, except for Ronaldo, aLL of them claim that ZIDANE WAS THE BEST PLAYER OF HIS GENERATION…You must read..

  • nash

    ps: Ronaldo didn’t play at all -he was UNUSED in all matches of the 94 World Cup…

  • The Nigerian Nightmare

    Nash calm down..Zidane is great but im sorry Ronaldo was greater…in 1998 WC, France barely made it..but check this the 2002 WC, France did not win one single game..did u hear that, one SINGLE game despite that all star squad…Ronaldo against all odds, came from a knee injury and scored 8 goals to win WC 2002…Even the Euro 2000 France claims came from a lucky Trezeguet winner..Italy dominated the game and Zidane was invisible thanks to Albertini..

    Ronaldo’s pace, form, match winning ability will surpass Zizou’s magic anytime..i love Zizou but he is no match for the iconic Ronaldo..Ronaldo was only 22 when he led Brazil to 1998 WC and 26 when he won it with them in 02…yes he might be fat now but he has already accomplished everything he needed…he is still scoring goals now at Corinthians..

    Zizou is a legend and will aways be but he is not “Il Fenomino”…im sorry.

  • nash

    Sorry, but calm down…Your argument is once again silly …You don’t know that in the 2002 Zidane was injured and played only vs. Denmark. So, put the blame on France, and not on Zidane…But, since i can’t convince you as to something which the vast majority of football fans believe, namely that Zizou is the best of his generation, ask the players who you appreciate: ask Pele, Di Stefano, Cruyff, Maradoona and so on. They all have stated that Zidane is the BEST of his generation..

    Conclusively, i think that you are pretty alone in what you believe…

    Pele-Maradona-Zidane-Cruyff-Di Stefano… That’s the real greatest
    ps Ronaldo won the 2002 WC. Ok, but it was the worst WC ever, with dead Germas as opponents.

  • soco

    Pele not number 1???

    And um, where’s Roberto Baggio???

  • therush

    “in 1998 WC, France barely made it..but check this the 2002 WC, France did not win one single game..did u hear that, one SINGLE game despite that all star squad”

    Is this supposed to be a knock against Zidane? You must have the shortest memory ever as Zidane was at like 40% and played in only game. So suddenly this “all-star” squad is missing one player and suddenly can’t beat anyone. Fast forward to 2006 and France (in likely the weakest qualifying UEFA group) is in third place behind such powers as Israel and Switzerland. So Zidane comes back and almost singlehandly wills his team into the finals. Is he done? No, he then picks that same sorry team up by its bootstraps and basically drags them to the WC Final. Yeah, Zidane sure can’t take over games.

    BTW, how is “all-star” France doing sans Zidane since 2006? Scored all of one goal in Euro ’08 and were laughed out of the tournament. Followed up by needing a dubious goal in teh tiebreaker against Ireland to just qualify for WC ’10. Yeah, Zidane sure doesn’t take over a game and lift teams up simply do to his own awesome.

  • nash

    That’s what i said in my last two messages…The arguments of Nigerian Nightmare, whose list otherwise is very good, are silly and on no account convincing… But ‘therush’ message is another proof that perhaps you are alone, nigerian, in considering Ronaldo superior to Zidane, let alone using the said arguments…

  • you_f*cking_dance)like_a_white_boy!

    Zidane’s better than Ronaldo, i thought everyone knew that.. Ronaldo is/was great though.

  • Botev PLovdiv

    where is Hristo Stoichkov ? where is Thierry Henry ?
    PELE is the number ONE he is “the king of football”

  • Ignorant Idiots

    Guys we all know that there are more than 20 great football players and that it is impossible to rank them in a way that all you fools are happy.

  • you_f*cking_dance)like_a_white_boy!

    -Ignorant idiots

    i agreed with you, and thought you made a great point, but calling people fools perhaps wasn’t needed…
    this is football after all, it get’s emotions up :D

  • reddevils

    diego armando maradonna before pele and zizou ?
    please tell me you’re a bit stoned when posting this list :p

    and lilian thuram ? recoba ?….c’mon son! r u kiddin’ me? why dont u try with franco baresi or marco van basten

  • ram

    they are all great players but not the best as listed,maradona,pele are by far better than zizou,ronaldinho isnt in the list an yet he is the only complete player ever:he has the skill,vision,aggresiveness,pace n scoring ability……in short the best ever
    okocha,maradona,george weah shd make the list too

  • ram

    they are all great players but not the best as listed,maradona,pele are by far better than zizou,ronaldinho isnt in the list an yet he is the only complete player ever:he has the skill,vision,aggresiveness,pace n scoring ability……in short the best ever
    okocha,maldini,george weah shd make the list too

  • jay10

    Pele played at the slowest ever football time, Maradona was drug addict (just imagine Michael Jordan on enhancing drugs), and Zizou had a computer in his head, along with amazing technique. he won everything there was to win.
    Beckham, Thuram, Carlos, Khan= wft?!
    there will never be accurate list, but the ones who should end up on it are Messi, Rooney, CR, Dinho, Kaka, Giggs, Van Basten, Drogba, Del Piero, Van Nielsterooy.
    Just check their stats, achievements, records..
    JAY JAY OKOCHA in the back.. :)

  • jay10

    and I forgot Dennis Berkamp, a true genius, one of the most talented forwards of all time, not just scorer, guy had amazing solutions

  • sam

    bobby moore…. how is he not on the list??????? yet oliver khan is?
    zidane was awsome but by no means number one, and what about the likes of gordan banks? stanley matthews? geoff hurst? george best? rob green? steven gerrard? frank lampard? dennis berkamp? etc etc
    but its down to opinion so fair play!!

  • Gabriel_Galiano7

    These is for me the best eleven over the last 20 years:
    Goalkeeper – Buffon
    Defense-center – Maldini
    Defense Center – Thuram
    Right back – Maicon
    Left back – Roberto Carlos
    Defensive midfielder – Essien
    Attacking midfielder – Zidane
    Attacking midfielder right – Luis Figo
    Attacking midfielder left – Ryan Giggs
    Striker – Ronaldinho Gaucho
    Striker – Romario

  • Where’s Van Basten??????? also y the hell is recoba on that list????

  • CHEN

    best play of each decade

    Best player of the 1950s: Alfredo di Stefano
    Best player of the 1960s: Pele
    Best Player of the 1970s: Franz Beckenbauer
    Best Player of the 1980s: Michael Platini(FIFA player of year:1983,1984,1985)
    Best Player of the 1990s:Ronaldo(FIFA player of year:1996,1997.Ballon d’Or?1997.FIFA player of 1998 world cup:1998.199 games 180 goals:1994-1998)
    Best Player of the 2000s:Zidane(FIFA player of year:2000,2003.FIFA player of 2006 world cup:2006.)

    Best player ever:
    1 Pele king of football
    2 Ronaldo the fenomeno
    3 Platini
    4 Romario
    5 Beckenbaur

    The top ten players in the voting were :RONALDO named FIFA player of 1998 world cup

    1. Ronaldo, BRA

    2. Davor Suker, CRO

    3. Lilian Thuram, FRA

    4. Marcel Desailly, FRA

    5. Rivaldo, BRA

    6. Zinedine Zidane, FRA

    7. Michael Owen, ENG

    8. Edgar Davids, HOL

    9. Dunga, BRA

    10. Dennis Bergkamp, HOL

  • Bakken

    But oh my god! Why is Ronaldo nr 7? He is number 1 of all time. Maradona second. Football not ur sport, ey? ;)

  • Marc

    Only if you call it soccer and only watch it every world cup, you can believe this list. It’s impossible to make everyone agree about who would be the biggest players of all time, but it would be more like this: Pele, Maradona, Cruyff, Beckenbauer, George Best, Distefano, Garrincha, Zidane, Platini, Gerd Muller, Lev Iashin, Marco Van Basten, Dejan Savicevic, Ronaldo, Enzo Francescoli, George Hagi, Gordon Banks, Romario, Eusebio, Puskas, Bobby Charlton.

  • silviu

    looooolll where the F, is HAGI ? :OOOOOnot iven in the list? youve put there goalkeepers and you didnt put HAGI??


    the list was ok… however pele iz number 1 nd maradona # 2 than zidani…got love zidani” God of midfield”… there missin eusebio, rivaldo,romario, klissmann and more

  • Cruijff

    Johannes Cruijff is the best player of all time….. by far…Dennis Bergkamp… Van basten….. the Dutch players are always underrated and forgotten it is depressing

  • festo

    Go to barcelona, and also ask ronaldo who made all the contributions in his success and the answer will be Rivaldo.I am shocked that the list and all the commentators have not mentioned this great brazilian who possessed so much skills and a great left footer.

  • reeceerrington

    this is the crappest list….EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!where the hell is c.ronaldo????????
    this is the real top 20

    1.messi 2.c.ronaldo 3.kaka 4.pele 5.baggio 6.owen 7.obafemi martins 8.drogba
    9.rooney 10.a.young 11.defoe 12.cech 13.bruno alves 14.benzema 15.ribery
    16.kenny miller 17.lampared 18.f.torres 19.steven gerrard 20.vidic

    now dat’s a flippin top 20

  • reece errington

    anyone agree

  • nash

    believe me, u have no idea about football saying that



  • Ashu

    The real taker of no.1 spot should be maradona because in 1986 its not between argentina vs rest its between maradona vs rest as he is the only player in the history of soccer who can single-handedly drove a team to win world cup.


    This is actually the worst list ever, its shite who ever wrote this has no idea about football

  • Ruairi

    reece errington:

    you are a retard. Obafemi Martins 7th of all time? You are a fucking spanner.

  • Wayne

    Zidane is a U.F.O !!!
    Just compare archive materials .I would say Pele Maradona and Zidane are best football players EVER.I don’t care about the order (of appearance).

  • someone

    lol… where’s the king of soccer?
    where’s Pelé?

  • danny(RO)

    the worst top ever….pele is the best…where is ferenz pusckas or gica HAGI…lilian thuram???wtf….he was good but dan petrescu was much better adrian ilie(the cobra)???

  • Stjopa

    It’s a good list! And those who think that C. Ronaldo is better than the real Ronaldo should have their heads examined. There can be only one Ronaldo, and there is only one Ronaldo. And Zidane really is the best ever, Maradona had a few good moments but Zizou had it all: charisma, strength, skills, brains, mentality and trophies. David Beckham is the only one that doesn’t belong here. And dear reeceerrington A.Young, B.Alves, O. Martins are good players, but come on, be serious.

  • MAM

    1. Dago Maradona
    2. Requelma
    3. Gedan
    4. Messi
    5. Cristiyano Ronaldo
    6. Tavaz
    7. Figo
    8. Owen
    9. Ayala
    10. Milito

  • bar05

    first of all zidane was not votes as the best in 1998 wc. it was Ronaldo fenomeno!

    alvaro recoba???!!! beckham??? raul?? thuram?? THEY DONT DESERVE TO BE HERE!!!!



  • nash

    Zidane was not voted as the MVP of the 98 World Cup, only because of the sily habit of FIFA conducting the vote each time before the Final. In fact, Zidane proved in the final that he was the best. It is the same logic due to which, Ronaldo, who was in fact the best player of the next WC, wasn’t voted so, but Kahn was awarded in 2002

  • JbJ95



  • Biolagic

    zidane ur havin a laugh even kalou is better than him god

  • Biolagic


  • felipe

    The list is straight i like the fact that zizou is 1st but i think platini shuold be in a higher rank also what happened to garrincha?? the black spider should be up there too, u should update that and include ronaldinho not cristiano he is just like beckham “advertising”

  • DCP

    wow. this is a pretty stupid list…… what about ronaldinho, didier drogba, wayne rooney. these are all amazing players! and whats with pele 2nd! noooo way thats right. zinedine zidane is good but at least pele didnt headbutt a guy.

  • futbol

    kaka. rivaldo. lio messi. ronaldinho. rong any bell???

  • futbol

    ring any bells?*

  • JO

    Which dumb ass put together this list!!! some dont belong in the top 50… where the hell is goerge best? Henry? schmeichel? baggio? romario? Maldini? and many many others!!!

  • you_f*cking_dance)like_a_white_boy!

    what about Phil Neville!!!?!?
    pucking amazing player!!!!

  • Mindoza

    The Brasil (real) Ronaldo should be one of the best despite many injuries he had suffered.

  • nash

    You are welcome to a site on the World Cup legends…
    without dot. Enter through Mozilla, please.
    Thank you

  • nick

    The fact that this list contains Beckham, Recoba, Raul, Thuram, Figo and Koeman is a bit of a joke really, especially if you’re going to leave the likes of George Best and Ferenc Puskas off the list. Di Stefano should be ranked higher, no way Zidane should be above Pele, Maradona, Cruyff, Puskas, Di Stefano or Beckenbauer. No way should Oliver Kahn be on here ahead of Gordon Banks either. If Yashin was the best goalie of all time, then Banks was a very close second. Why Eusebio isn’t on here, I don’t know. The guy was one of the most feared players of the 60s, and almost single-handedly took Portugal past England in ’66. Bobby Moore should also make the list as one of the best defenders of all time. Other possible inclusions: Charlton, Matthews, Matthaus. No current players should make the list either, it’s definitely too soon to judge whether Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi are going to be top 20 players of all time. Other than Brazilian Ronaldo, there’s no way any current player makes the list.
    Top 20:
    1. Maradona
    2. Pele
    3. Di Stefano
    4. Beckenbauer
    5. Puskas
    6. Best
    7. Cruyff
    8. Eusebio
    9. Carlos Alberto
    10. Eusebio
    11. Muller
    12. Moore
    13. Yashin
    14. Zico
    15. Zidane
    16. Matthaus
    17. Garrincha
    18. Charlton
    19. Platini
    20. Banks

    No current players. A load of legendary players.

  • nash

    I totally agree about your line of thought concerning the omisssion of contemporary players from the list. You seem to respect the real legends of football, of which youngsters and teens have little knowledge of…
    But i disagrre as to your ranking..Best above Cruff, Muller and Zidane? He hasn’t played in a single World Cup, which MUST BE the MAIN CRITERION of ranking players.Carlos Alberto above Zidane? well……..Eusebio above Zidane?Zico above Zidane? Ok, greta player, but come on. Zico was a loser…And this is what counts………And, after all……………..Zidane, the most complete player, along Pelke, the man who won it all, 15th????????I think that you must reconsider NOT what players you have put in your list, but the ranking

  • Bobby

    Luis Nazario de Lima Ronaldo R9 El Fenomeno. Who have not seen ronaldo’s football they have not seen football at all. I recommend to watch Ronaldo at Youtube and then make rankings.

  • K

    This is a joke! Recoba? Really? David Beckham? LOL!!! Raul??? That too, before Zico? Over the years, only in Brazil, there have been at least 200 players better than these guys (not to mention the rest of the world).

    Zidane the best player ever? Was he the best player in the Real Madrid team he played for?

    Thuram? Haha. What about Djalma Santos, Nilton Santos, Maldini, Baresi, Bergomi?

    Whoever created this list knows nothing about football.

  • Adam

    Thierry Henry.
    Dennis Bergkamp.
    George Best.
    Ian Wright.
    Robert Pires.

    These are in there as Arsenals 04 season is the best team in football history. and shut up the yanks football isn’t soccer you idiots

  • sonia

    i think zidan is the best football player in the world with ronado’fenomenon’and i put in my list and kaka and cr.ronaldo and inzaghi and the new blod pato,borrielo,messsi,torres.


    what the f**** is dai beckham doing on this list….you are obviously of limited intelligence and lack any football knowledge. I admit (which is hard for a Welshman) that he has been a “good” England footballer, no more. Produced key performances at key times…but…He is the Most over-trated player of modern times….Thuram?….a top athlete, that is of no doubt…top tweny of all time?….dear me nooo…Carlos, great to watch, defensively flawed, Koeman?…strong, commited but limited, Figo?…a serious lack of the correct temprament im afraid. I must giggle at current comments that only include “today’s players” Please all of you have a little respect for whats gone before you.

    I would like to the think the following players would have a “chance” of hitting top twenty…Maldini, Eusebio, John Charles, Best.

    Interesating list, thanks for the oppertunity to comment


    good team Mr Nightmare of Nigeria, though I feel your “having had to win a world cup” criteria is flawed as some of the best players to kick a ball have come from coutries that have nver graced the final stages of a world cup.

  • Jfo

    zidane ?? ????????????????????????? WTF, Maradona is de best player of all time

  • nino

    well clearly whever made this list is french lol,and whats with the last bit dissin world champs at the time italy lol awwww pissed they lost,huhhhh no wonder they had to cheat to beat ireland lol,what about lionel messi,c ronaldo,r baggio,or romario,and zidane before pele, PELE people,ummm yea this list was the best soccer players according to some stupid frenchman,im sorry but a list w/o lionel messi,fernando torres and francesco totti in the top 20 aint a list worth giving credit too,viva la france…………..NOT

  • nash

    nino, you know nothing about football. Probably because you are too young and you don’t know other players beyond Torre, Messi and the contemporary ones…

  • Cliff Charlesworth

    Where is Sir Stanley Mathews. Tommy Lawton . Frank Swift . George Best & Bobby Moore.

  • messi fan

    ok i agree messi is really good but every current player other than ronaldo and ronaldinho dont belong its too early to tell right now. Really portugal ronoldo????????????? why would u do that he hasn’t done shit for his teams its all about him he’s selfish. i agree that this list is good but you can change a couple that is based on opinion thought. Van Basten should definitely be on here he was was too good to not be here.

  • jp antunes

    this list was clearly done by someone who knows very little about football (or soccer for you yankees :-D )
    missing *huge* players like:
    keepers:zenga, preud’homme, jean-marie pfaff, iker casillas,
    defenders:baresi, maldini, ricardo gomes, matthaus
    midfielders:cristiano ronaldo, messi, ronaldinho, bobby charlton, george best, cantona, kaka, roberto baggio, hagi
    strikers:van basten, eusebio, puskas, zamorano, cubillas, madjer, romario, klinsmann

    .. and i could go on and on. any one of the above would deserve a place in the list way more that beckham, thuram, c.a. torres, muller, recoba (lol), koeman, kahn and even gentile.

  • Sam

    hey baxter zizou is the player that took france to the final and is the player that gave france the first ever world cup so anything he did to cost france the world cup is nothing compered to what he did!!! without him france until now would be waiting for its first glory i dont agree with many things on the list and i think zizou diego and pele are the top three players ever born. i would put maldini instead of roberto carlos and many too many players doesnt deserve to be on the top 50 list rather than top 20. zizou is the no 1 palyer along side maradona and wait for messi he is coming fast

  • Mike Gordon

    I would classify Pele first, after him we could put Zidane, Cristiano Ronaldo, Robinho, does not matter. The important is to remember the records of Pele, three times world champion, more then 1200 goals, a lot of wards and never has problem with drug as Maracoca

  • Logan Andy

    List :)

    1)Pele (All time best star)
    2)Maradona (Shinning Star)
    3)Ronaldo (Supper soccer)
    4)Zidane(Skill Player)

  • Mein Wort ist Gesetz

    Die Liste ist sowas von beschissen, Beckham gehört nichtmal unter die Top 500 Spieler aller Zeiten. Thuram und Carlos haben unter den Top 20 auch nix zu suchen, genauso wenig Recoba, der war ja nur Edelreservist bei Inter. Raul vor Di Stefano is ja wohl auch ein Witz und Carlos Alberto gehört nie und nimmer auf 8. Pele ist sowieso der überschätzeste Spieler aller Zeiten, der kann sich mal hinter Leuten wie Friedenreich, Garrincha, Best, Maldini, Baresi, Baggio, Okocha, Cantona, Puskas, Eusebio, Matthäus, van Basten, Rijkaard, Michael Laudrup, Rufer, Ronaldinho, Zico, Kempes, Pasarella, Francescoli, Seeler, Neeskens, Del Piero, Totti, Paolo Rossi, Romario, Tigana, Fontaine, Batistuta, Lineker, Keegan, Sir Boby Charlton, Mihajlovic, Litmanen, Mijatovic, Walter, Rahn, Messi, Terry, Veron, Schmeichel, Breitner, Facchetti, Butrageno, Socrates, etc. einordnen.

  • bugar


  • OL

    Dobrin , Hagi , Chivu etc

  • vahid

    1- zidane
    2- ronaldo (9)
    3- ronaldiniho
    4- maradonna
    5- michele platini

  • vahid

    1- zidane
    2- ronaldo (9)
    3- ronaldiniho
    4- maradonna
    5- michele platini

  • seanyisthasex

    Ok Recoba? Raul? Thuram? Beckham?

    Whats going on lol this list is so flawed.

    Im trying my best to say its too american but finding it hard to lol

    I mean no Best,Van Basten, Eusebio, Baggio I really could go on

    Thats why these sort of lists Americans should stay clear from

  • shane

    This is the worst list I have ever seen. It is quite obvious that you dont know much about football and its history. You really need to check out some old matches plus was naming David Beckham a joke? Here is the top 20 in random order. Pele, Maradona, Zidane, George Best, Bekkenbaur, Johan Cruiff, Ronaldo, Ronaldinho, Garrincha, Puskas, Di Stefano, Eusebio, Platini, Zico, Maldini, van Basten, Ruud Gullit, Carlos Alberto, Thierry Henry, and I will leave spot 20 open for debate. This list excludes keepers, because to me they are in a different discussion. Also must say that Messi and C. Ronaldo will someday end up on this list along with Fabregas. I have a feeling I forgot someone but this is more of a real reflection of the history of this game. By the way , I am American and it does not affect my ability to have knowledge of this game. It is true though, that Americans that speak out about football in such a stupid way do annoy me because it makes it seem like know American knows anything about this game, which isnt true.

  • Pingback: Best Player of All Time? - True Sports Core Forums()

  • franco

    very sad that anyone who has to do with international soccer always has a negative thing to say about one of the top two greatest teams in the world. Italy. they did not add one italian player on to this list…. rossi, baggio, baresi, maldini, totti, and most of all, the greatest defender of all time fabio cannavarro…. the only defender ever to win fifa player of the world. keep feeding the italians the fuel to make you all look like fools..

  • franco

    there are 8 guys on that list that are lucky they crack the top 100… i mean the thurman spot is the most comical to me.. his best day will never touch maldini or cannavarros worst

  • Justin

    Where is George Best seriously?
    This list sucks! Thuram is not the 20th best player of all time, Beckham is way overated and I can go one, horrible footie list.

  • rashid

    ronaldinho is the best!!

  • justin


  • Justin

    sex sexy

  • DomoBhoy

    This is a terrible list
    where is george best or jimmy johnstonee?

  • Afg for life

    agreed that zidane is the best soccer player
    i really lked the top 3 chosen people

  • snurge

    I’m 35, started watching in 82 so i will not allow myself to evaluate Pele, Cruyff, Best, Eusebio, Rivelino et al. Just wished I could have watched them play. Had the privilege, however, to watch Maradona and Platini in the 80s. That’s my childhood, right there. Many, including myself, were certain these were the last 2 greats. Then came extraordinary strikers (Van Basten, Ronaldo). And finally, after what seemed to be an eternity, came Zidane. He had both Platini’s vista and Maradona’s technique (with both his right and left feet, BTW). However, he had something more. Something unique, that would send shivers down your spine and often leave you in awe. Zidane the artist, the maestro, the magician, whatever you wanted to call him, Zidane, the shy guy with some kind of a temper, had grace. I believe he will always be remembered him for this. Like Pele, Di Stefano, Maradona, and countless others, he left something for future generations to remember and reinvent. He has a legacy.
    I am now left awaiting the next true great. Sometimes I see a very nice pass from Kaka, and I get nostlagic. I always look back at that Brazil-France match in Germany in 2006. I remember shortly prior to the game, the faces of the Brazilian players shaking Zidane’s hand. I remember the respect and sadness in their eyes. To me, that was his last game. It was supposed to be the last. I watched it as the last. And then, it was just beautiful. Ask most Brazilians who they think is the greatest of all… after Pele!

  • nash

    SNURGE has told it all. I totally agree. I am 35 also, and i share the same memories with you, snurge. You simply know a lot about football…
    You can also visit my site on the World Cup Greats

    WITHOUT DOT AFTER www. Please, through Mozilla FF

  • DJ

    Alvaro Recoba are you joking?

    My all time XI would be.

    GK: Lev Yashin(USSR)
    LB: Giacinto Facchetti (Italy)
    RB: Claudio Gentile (Italy)
    CB: Bobby Moore (England)
    CB: Franz Beckenbauer (Germany) C
    LM: Johan Cruyff (Holland)
    RM: Garrincha (Brazil)
    CM: Diego Maradona (Argentina)
    CM: Michel Platini (France)
    CF: Ferenc Puskas (Hungary)
    CF: Pele (Brazil)

    With Dino Zoff(Italy) Carlos Alberto Torres (Brazil)Daniel Passarella (Argentina) Zico (Brazil)George Best (Northern Ireland)Alfredo di Stéfano (Argentina) Eusébio (Portugal) On the bench.

    Anyone who says Cristanio Ronaldo doesn’t know anything about football someone like Ruud Guillet has more right to be in the top 20 he had everything a footballer needs.

  • masterFlash

    I don’t speak german or even understand it, but I have to agree with ‘Beckham gehört nichtmal unter die Top 500 Spieler aller Zeiten’.

  • alphaplus

    i agree zidane is the best ever. pele played in the worst era (physical, mental, talent level) of the history of football. what would have been if he had played in 2000s? defenders would destroy him easily.

  • samuraihp


    how could you put in Lillian Thuram while ignoring Paolo Maldini?

    Kahn over Buffon raises an eyebrow too

  • leo1oel

    I can’t believe how ridiculous this list is.
    Thuram, Roberto Carlos, Kahn, Beckham, Koeman, Figo and Raul were/are good players but not worth a top-20 ranking all time dude!!

    Where are Puskas, Eusebio and even Messi?
    You do mention Beckham is one of the best players all time, but you leaf out the real British stars George Best and Charlton?
    Same for the Dutch: Koeman yes, but not the extremely talented and elegant Van Basten and Bergkamp? Also Gullit deserves better than Koeman.
    And you prefer Brazilian Roberto Carlos above Romario?

    Di Stefano, Platini, Zidane, , Ronaldo, Beckenbauwer are worth being mentioned in this list.

    But most of all Johan Cruijff, Pele and Diego Maradona were a total different league!
    Anyone who comes with a list without these three at the top (don’t care about the order) cannot be taken seriously about soccer.

  • Dinu

    Where is Gheorghe Hagi?

  • nasiru gwandu

    yes all i realy knw is that zidane is the Best…and i really cnt say anifin abt the rest…but pele too is a good player according to what i had…tnks

  • Paris


    Fuck ths top

  • BRFC

    Where is Georgie Best, Eusebio? And Zizou ahead of Pele, Cruyuff and Maradona is just bizzare. A great player but I’d probably put him about 15th. And Thuram? Then again, no – one will ever agree. Great list m8.

  • b52

    first of all you all forgot its about the ranking of all time…. with all due respect its so wrong to put players like thuram, david beckham,my all time rankings would be….1.MARADONA.2PELE.3.VAN BASTEN.4.PLATINI.5.ZICO.6.DE STEANO.7.KLINSMAN.8.GEORGE BEST.9.ROMARIO.10.ZENEDIN ZIDAN{ZIZOU}11.PAUL GASCOIN.12.ROBERTO BAGIO.13.DENNIS BERGKAMB.14.RUUD GULLIT.15.OLIVER KHAN.16.PAULO MALDINI.17.RYAN GIGGS.18.ROGER MILLA..19.DONDONI.20.ABEDI PELE….ITS hard to say top 20 coz there is a lot tallent left.thiery henry,luis figo,bebeto,raul,ronaldinho,messi.but to mentoin a few…..

  • gray

    ronaldinho is the best player of all time

  • JOE

    I dont know if anyone has noticed, but hasn’t defending improved dramatically in the past 20 years!! it looks way to easy for some players back then, but that is what is was.

  • livfan99

    This list is not a list of the top 20 football players of all time. It is a list of the top 20 football players of the last couple of decades, with a few true greats thrown in.

    Thuram and Roberto Carlos are good modern full-backs. They are not in the same league as the strangely omitted Bobby Moore, Franco Baresi and Uruguayan Obdulio Varela.

    Alvaro Recoba must be a mistake or a joke. He wouldn’t be in my top 20 Uruguayan forwards who played for Inter. It hardly needs to be said George Best, Bobby Charlton, Garrincha, van Basten, Romario, Rivelino and many more eclipse and outshine him.

    Zidane is a good shout. Although i wouldn’t have him my number one (curiously you say Pele is the greatest footballer in history then place him at n o. 2?) he is certainly one of the greats. While not in the front row with Pele, Maradona and arguably Cruyff and Di Stefano, he is certainly in the row behind with Puskas, Beckenbauer, Platini and Best.

  • livfan99

    and leo1oel, anyone who calls football ‘soccer’ also cannot be taken seriously about football ;)

  • carlos

    MARADONA 1!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • scooter

    george best was irish!

  • Pancho

    Pele > Zidane by MILES.

  • Wanna hit me cos im white?

    now i feel that the truly best player is a matter of club and national loyalty, however there are a few undeniable players. the top 20 must include Beckenbauer,Pele, Maradona, Best, Sir Stanley Mathews, Garrincha, Ronaldo, Cyruff, (i believe ) Ronaldinho, Bobby Charlton, Bobby Moore, Platini, Puskas, Di Stefano, Zidane, Maldini.
    i fully believe a complete list must include all of these players, would love to hear opinions.

  • tec4

    As a soccer appreciator, let me tell you that this is a really crappy list. 25% of the players on the list shouldn’t be there.
    First of all, why the hell did you include Recoba on the list? He plays well from time to time, he’s a really inconstant player.

    The exclusion of players like Eusebio, Bobby Charlton, Gerge Best, Baggio, Van Basten, Garrincha, Ronaldinho or C. Ronaldo is an offense to footbal, and so is the inclusion of players like Thuram and Beckham.

    Also, I really think Zidane shouldn’t be #1. I mean, the guy was amazing, but Maradona and Pele are true legends.

  • dc1888

    beckham should be no were near this list.where is eusebio,kenny daglish or george best

  • messi

    no no no!!!!! the best players are

  • Panbolero

    @John [1]: In the rest of the world, we call it football. It is more appropiate for it, since american football is mostly played with the hands.

  • bracco

    my list?
    1)Pele’ the best by far
    2)Maradona the magic left
    3)Cruiff the total player
    4)Zidane the magician
    5)Beckembauer the kaiser
    6)Di stefano the super star
    7)Platini the all rounder
    8)Van basten the grace
    9)Maldini paolo the best defender
    10)Rivera the brain behind the ball
    11)Pusckas the power
    12)Riva the thunder
    13)Eusebio the black thunder
    14)Sivori the best 2d left magic
    15)Charlton the best of the britons
    16)Baggio a pleasure to look
    17)Baresi the defender with the heart
    18)Muller untouchable
    19)Ronaldo the brasilian force
    20)Messi just starting few years and will be top 5

    to many players are not listed and deserved to be in.but the list is to short

  • bracco

    You guys, doyou like my list?

  • juba

    where is Dimitar Barbertov,

  • hahaha

    wht a joke,no way,zinedane, head of mardonna and pele,please come on, pukas is not even on the
    list,ronald koeman and beckham, hahaha,wht about roberto baggio from italy, romario from brazil,im sorry
    who ever made this list was drunk or american,top five,1pele2maradonna3cruyff4pukas5di stefano,zinedane would be in tenth place not first…

  • soccer chick

    this is so stupid!! the only thing thats right is beckham!!
    how bout ballack?? he is awwesome!
    whoever made this is an idiot!!

  • Daud

    Tottally agree with the list, but Zidane’s name should be listed on the top of player, because he barely missed balls.

  • donchymax

    Hate reading peoples coment declaring that pele was a graet player what made him graet a player without a club history who rained in a local club in brazil is it what made him graet all the best things that happened in scoccer history was not by him the best goal ever was not scored by pele neither is he the best scoccer entertainer ever or dirbler,he is not a master dribler not the best free kick taker what then made him graet i dont believe in tortoise stories with the bird that is what peles story is for the true master of the game is diego amando maradona the only man who can do anything with the game and can detect the tempo of the game at any giving time not pele

  • football not soccer

    dude Figo? Raul? Beckam? Lillian Thuram? Are you kidding me? Zidane # 1? LMAO … LMAO … LMAO … LMAO … LMAO … LMAO … LMAO … LMAO … LMAO … LMAO … LMAO … LMAO … i'm sensing a serious bias towards European players.

  • Chop

    God that is a fucking terrible list. Recoba? Beckham? Raul? Jesus

    Pele/Maradona = 1/2 (select whichever wherever you like. they are clearly the best of all time)

    I love Zizou, but c’mon, #1? I think not

  • already

    Man, this list is so SO WRONG it's either an offence or a bad joke.

    Yeah, certainly a joke, it must be.

  • Paulo

    You must have been high on crack when u made this list haha.

    Lilian Thuram, Beckham, Oliver Kahn Recoba etc. ROFLMFAO

    You sir, are a true comedian, funniest list ever

    I do however like the list "bracco" made a few posts before me, i fully agree with that..

  • ronaldinho1080

    dude ??? wtf where is ronaldinho-adriano-xavi-messi-henry-higuain-drogba??

  • Kyle

    I kind of feel you put Pelé in 2nd just because he is brazilian…

  • jorge

    you got to be kiding how the hell do you put beckam he suck, you dont put ronaldino but you put beckam lol you are a funny guy but you dont know anything about soccer.

  • dick

    what the fuck happened to ROBERTO BAGGIO who pawns every1…?

  • *****

    OK, I appreciate the hard work that surely went into this work, as I'm sure many of the others do. you justified your answers and everything was well organized and explained. If someone who didn't know football (soccer) very well, they'd say that this list was excellent. And I agree with many of the people on your list. But for someone who's an avid watcher and follower, and perhaps even PLAYER of this great sport, I think that the majority would agree that this list needs an update. Of course, legends such as Pele, Zidan, and Maradona deserve spots on this list, but how about all of the newer players of today?!? For example, the one GLARING fault I found in this list was the exclusion of Messi. He is BY FAR one of the best players the world of soccer have ever seen. His talent is undeniable, and he is like a diamond sparkling in the rough; his footwork, dribbling, speed and acceleration, and renowned goal- scoring abilities place him in AT LEAST the top three, arguably first. Secondly, I'd like to point out that you are lacking in players such as Xavi Hernandez, Andres Iniesta, and Iker Cassilas. Those are only a few of many which deserve to be included in this list, much above the likes of Beckham, who has no place on this list. No offense to him, I'm sure that he's a great guy, but he's definitely more of a hollywood celebrity than he is a soccer star.
    I hope that this wasn't too rude, and once again, I marvel at the amount of work and research that you put into this. I for one, would probably either not finish from lack of patience, or include the entire starting line-up of FCBarcelona if I was to attempt a list of this kind. :) If you were to list the top 20 TEAMS of all time, there's no arguing that FCBarcelona would be on the list, I would even say first! (I'm a fan)
    Again, Kudos on your hard work, but next time try researching some of today's current players a little more, and make your decisions on the palyer themselves, overall, not solely on their ability to take free kicks.

  • Dillon

    How is Zizou higher ranked the Pele!?! it even says the greatest soccer player in the history of the game im pretty sure thats all-time

  • difficult to agree on this one, but seriously, where is George Best?

  • hitch

    i have only one question. Where's Ronaldinho??????? without him this is not "top 20 football players of all time"…..imho of course

  • imj

    Michael Laudrup should definitely be on this list. He is perhaps the football player with the greatest technique, no exagerration. Watch his videos on youtube and seek for yourselves.


    This is very good site lot of information here I send this site many friend Because I like this site.

  • somebody

    are you kidding me ? who make this top ? where's G. Hagi ?

  • Ashwin

    est-ce vraiment vous vous êtes le meilleur(is that really u ,u r the best)

  • fadi

    zidane 1
    maradona 2
    pele 3
    ronaldo 4
    croyf 5
    destifano 6
    boskas 7
    gorji hajji 8
    platini 9
    zico 10
    simply zidane was number 1 and the best beacus france team was so bad and he made them shampion many tims with his clobs too.using his head left and right feets corring .passing amzing.pele in his time was no good foottbler and his team was so good already they had 11 pelel that why he did won .maradona was great too i give number 2 beacuse just like zidane but the defrnce he had onlly one left feet to play with . and no fast enugh no good header .so 1-zidane 2-maradona 3-pele

  • fadi

    zizou is zidane .simply number 1


    This is a biggest joke I have seen,Zidane and Beckham even not in Top100.Pele was best of best,there is only one pele,maybe only ronaldo in the 90s (94-98) and zico in the late 70 to early 80s were close.
    Argentina – Player of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the South American election.

    1.Diego Armando Maradona 193
    2.Alfredo di Stéfano 161
    3.José Manuel Moreno 82
    4.Adolfo Pedernera 24
    5.Enrique Omar Sivori 19
    6.Mario Alberto Kempes 15
    7.Angel Amadeo Labruna 12
    8.Daniel Passarella 8
    9.Raimundo Orsi 3
    10.Oscar Alfredo Ruggeri 1

    Argentina – Keeper of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the South American election.

    1.Amadeo Raúl Carrizo 68
    2.Ubaldo Matildo Fillol 53
    3.Hugo Orlando Gatti 20
    4.Américo Tesorieri 5
    5.Antonio Roma 4

    Austria – Player of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the European election.

    1.Matthias Sindelar 110
    2.Ernst Ocwirk 44
    3.Gerhard Hanappi 23
    4.Herbert Prohaska 13
    5.Karl Koller 12
    6.Toni Polster 11
    7.Ernst Happel 3
    8.Hans Krankl 2

    Austria – Keeper of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the European election.

    1.Rudi Hiden 63
    2.Walter Zeman 19
    3.Michael Konsel 3

    Belgium – Player of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the European election.

    1.Paul Van Himst 28
    2.Raymond Braine 14
    3.Eric Gerets 3
    4.Jan Ceulemans 2
    Jozef Mermans 2

    Belgium – Keeper of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the European election.

    1.Jean-Marie Pfaff 100
    2.Michel Preud’homme 41
    3.Jean De Bie 3

    Brazil – Player of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the South American election.

    1.”Pelé” 220 (Edson Arantes do Nascimento)
    2.Garrincha 142 (Manoel dos Santos Garrincha)
    3.”Zico” 51 (Arthur Antunes Coimbra)
    4.Thomas Soãres “Zizinho” 40
    5.Arthur Friedenreich 21
    “Tostão” 21 (Eduardo Gonçalves de Andrade)
    7.Valdir Pereira Didi 17
    8.Leônidas da Silva 13
    9.Nílton dos Santos 12
    Ronaldo 12 (Ronaldo Luís Nazário de Lima)
    11.Romário de Souza Faria 11
    12.Paulo Roberto Falcão 10
    Roberto Rivelino 10
    14.Ademir da Guía 9
    15.Luís Edmundo Pereira 7
    16.Carlos Alberto Torres 5
    17.Domingos Antônio da Guía 4
    18.Ademir 3 (Ademir Marquez de Menezes)
    19.”Bebeto” 2 (Jorge Roberto Gama de Oliveira)
    “Jairzinho” 2 (Jair Ventura Filho)

    Brazil – Keeper of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the South American election.

    1.Gilmar dos Santos Neves 47
    2.Émerson Leão 13
    3.Barbosa 11 (Barbosa Moacir Nascimento)
    4.Manga 4 (Manga Aílton Corrêa Arruda)

    England – Player of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the European election.

    1.Bobby Charlton 303
    2.Stanley Matthews 282
    3.Bobby Moore 74
    4.Kevin Keegan 45
    5.James Greaves 26
    6.Stephen Bloomer 25
    7.William “Dixie” Dean 22
    8.Thomas Lawton 15
    9.Thomas Finney 13
    Gary Lineker 13
    11.Vivian John Woodward 11

    England – Keeper of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the European election.

    1.Gordon Banks 360
    2.Peter Shilton 124
    3.Frank Victor Swift 17
    4.David Seaman 12
    5.Samuel Hardy 10
    6.Harry Hibbs 3

    France – Player of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the European election.

    1.Michel Platini 505
    2.Raymond Kopa 72
    3.Just Fontaine 40
    4.Eric Cantona 12
    5.Jean Tigana 11
    6.Robert Jonquet 2

    France – Keeper of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the European election.

    1.Bernard Lama 6
    2.Pierre Chayriguès 5
    3.Julien Darui 4
    4.Fabien Barthez 3

    Germany – Player of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the European election.

    1.Franz Beckenbauer 709
    2.Gerd Müller 249
    3.Fritz Walter 105
    4.Uwe Seeler 72
    5.Lothar Matthäus 43
    6.Karl-Heinz Rummenigge 40
    7.Paul Breitner 8
    8.Günter Netzer 6
    9.Richard Hofmann 5
    Wolfgang Overath 5
    11.Fritz Szepan 4
    12.Andreas Brehme 2
    Bernd Schuster 2
    14.Andreas Möller 1
    Rudi Völler 1

    Germany – Keeper of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the European election.

    1.Sepp Maier 263
    2.Harald Schumacher 51
    3.Andreas Köpke 37
    4.Jürgen Croy 15
    5.Hans Tilkowsky 10
    6.Heiner Stuhlfauth 9
    7.Toni Turek 7
    8.Bodo Illgner 4
    9.Hans Jakob 3
    10.Uli Stein 2

    Hungary – Player of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the European election.

    1.Ferenc Puskás 667
    2.Sándor Kocsis 54
    3.József Bozsik 41
    4.Imre Schlosser 26
    5.Györgi Sárosi 16
    6.Nándor Hidegkuti 11
    7.Flórián Albert 8
    8.Györgi Orth 2

    Hungary – Keeper of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the European election.

    1.Gyula Grosics 117
    2.Károly Zsák 5

    Italy – Player of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the European election.

    1.Gianni Rivera 113
    2.Giuseppe Meazza 90
    3.Giacinto Facchetti 79
    4.Franco Baresi 66
    5.Sandro Mazzola 53
    6.Silvio Piola 46
    7.Paolo Rossi 27
    8.Luigi Riva 26
    9.Roberto Baggio 21
    10.Gaetano Scirea 19
    11.Paolo Maldini 12
    12.Roberto Bettega 9
    13.Giampiero Boniperti 3

    Italy – Keeper of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the European election.

    1.Dino Zoff 373
    2.Giampiero Combi 49
    3.Walter Zenga 18
    4.Angelo Peruzzi 13
    5.Enrico Albertosi 12
    6.Gianluca Pagliuca 10
    7.Giulano Sarti 7
    8.Lorenzo Buffon 3

    Netherlands – Player of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the European election.

    1.Johan Cruijff 753
    2.Marco van Basten 240
    3.Ruud Gullit 63
    4.Dennis Bergkamp 14
    5.Ruud Krol 10
    6.Ronald Koeman 8
    7.Frank Rijkaard 3
    8.Faas Wilkes 2

    Netherlands – Keeper of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the European election.

    1.Hans van Breukelen 37
    2.Edwin van der Sar 21
    3.Eddy Pieters Graafland 3

    Spain – Player of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the European election.

    1.Alfredo di Stéfano 708
    2.Ferenc Puskás 667
    3.Ladislao Kubala 53
    4.Francisco Gento 49
    5.Luis Suárez 23
    6.Emilio Butragueño 8
    7.Miguel González “Michel” 3
    8.Amancio Amaro 2
    Telmo “Zarra” 2

    Spain – Keeper of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the European election.

    1.Ricardo Zamora 304
    2.Andoni Zubizarreta 31
    3.José Ángel Iríbar 10
    4.Luis Arconada 7
    5.Antoni Ramallets 5
    6.Francisco Buyo 3

    Uruguay – Player of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the South American election.

    1.Juan Alberto Schiaffino 52
    2.Luis Alberto Cubilla 25
    3.Obdulio Jacinto Varela 21
    4.José Leandro Andrade 16
    Héctor Scarone 16
    6.Enzo Francescoli 13
    7.José Nasazzi 12
    8.Pedro Virgilio Rocha 7
    9.Pedro Cea 3
    10.Alcides Edgardo Ghiggia 2

    Uruguay – Keeper of the Century
    Simply chosen as a sublist of the South American election.

    1.Ladislao Mazurkiewicz 46
    2.Roque Gaston Máspoli 26
    3.Rodolfo Rodríguez 6
    4.Andrés Mazali 4

  • Gareth Collins

    Pretty terrible choices. Obviously an fair-weather football enthusiast

  • boneywasa

    Zidane no. 1? That's a sad joke! Ronaldo before his injury problems was way superior to Zizou; and putting him before Pele? No way. I mean, Pele wass voted "Athlete of the Century" on three seperate polls. Think about it.

  • Ronaldinhos-Return

    why does everyone keep saying wrong Ronaldo??? if u guys really think c. Ronaldo should be on this list … ur crazy… Ronaldinho and George Weah should be on the list not Thuram and Roberto Carlos

  • Asang. E

    the list is a good one but i will like if you could divide it into particular years, eg 10 or 5 best footballers from 1970s to 1980s and 1980s to 1990s. at this point it would show a great difference. because as time passes the style, techniques and laws surrounding the soccer world keep changing. you cannot compare the style and technique of football of the 70s and that of 90s. for me Pele ,Diego Maradona, zico and zidan are my best century players of all time. i will like to have comments of Cameroon star and African player Samuel eto


    last decade to 2010:ronaldinho
    Skills:1.ronaldo fenomeno 1996-1998 2.ronaldinho 2004-2006
    3 garrinch 4 pele……………….100 maradona…….200 platini

  • mikiyfi

    Good joke – Zidane number 1 :)))) hahahhahah makes me laugh brother, it's ok though because you are 15 to 19 years old max max. Gooood stuff:))

  • mikiyfi

    Take a look here instead:
    Much better list


    messi beetter than ronaldo

  • utterly astounded as I scrolled down the page, only to find that the greatest football player of our existence wasnt included GEORGE BEST. And Zinedine zidane? The best player ever? worst list ever.

  • Donal

    He is every bit as good as Maradona if not better!!!

  • Hugo

    I would have to strongly dissagree with you putting Beckham. That guy is just a poster boy for the sport!!! I can think of at least 100 current players that are far better than Beckham.

  • Lastman18

    Where is C.Ronaldo!!!! XD


    According to me the top 20 players of all time-
    2. PELE
    10. ZICO
    13. GARINCHA

  • annabeth

    why is pele 2nd i mean i d k i m jst 10 ok….. im jst asking.

  • hello good mornin'

    Are you serious!!!Wheres george best,van basten,eusubio,jarizinho,baggio,geoff hurst?!?!?!And why is zizou in front of pele and maradona????? You need to see a doctor

  • Louis

    At the height of his career, Roy Keane was one of the world's greatest players. He is certainly the greatest football captain in history. Here is the test. Add Roy Keane at his best to England, the United States, the Netherlands, or Argentina and you have a World Cup finalist. His influence was that powerful. Step back and think about it and I think you'll say, feckin aye, he would lift each of those teams to their absolute best.

    I can't recall any of the greats of the first decade of the Premiership who, when asked, didn't say that Roy Keane was the greatest player they ever played against.

  • saurabh

    Where teh hell is Gabriel Batistuta????????????????

  • Henry

    You forget Michael Laudrup in your list. He is surely one of the greatest midfielders of all time. In the professional football world he is recieveing the honor to be among the very best players the world have seen but the public often forget him. I suppose it is because he is from a small country and didn’t have the top teammates on his national team.
    However he is voted to be the best foreign player in Spain for the last 25 years, it says it all.

  • Franz

    Franz Beckenbauer

    • Franz

      is the best player that will never generate

  • Elias

    You're so right, zidane is the best!!

  • Ale

    You were kidding right? :)

    Otherwise, it's the stupidest list I've ever seen.

  • mystery

    zinedine zidane number 1???i thought pele!!!


    1 Pele 58-62
    2 Ronaldo 1994-1998
    3 Zico 82-84
    4 Beckenbauer 70-74
    5 Maradona 86-88

  • big angry dude

    what about Eusebio and Marco Van Basten and Paolo Maldini and Puskas George Haggi , Hugo Sanchez and so many others that deserved to be here and i bet the guy that made this is french

  • ronaldo is nothing compared 2 messi and kaka is better than most of these players so this is dum

  • Naeem

    Hi. Your list of top 10 is respectable – but there is one glaring omission: George Best. Below the top 10, it's a bit absurd how David Beckham could make it at all as #18… As an Inter fan, it's nice to see Recoba in a list of all-time greats, for once!

    Also consider: Puskas, Garrincha, Eusebio, Socrates, van Basten, Baggio, Bergkamp, Maldini, Gullit, Batistuta, Stoichkov, Hagi, Dixie Dean, Leonidas da Silva…

  • Marcos

    This is the example of a non-list, Alfredo Distefano is too far away from where it belongs in history be placed (2nd or 3rd) you only need to compare the description of wht is written. i would have been of the opinion that the guy who built this was a Zidane Fan but obviously he doesn't know what Zoizou thought of Alfredo Distefano so the change is mandatory. I am not going to comment on Pele or Maradona the decription of Maradona is a shame as there is no single reference to his quality job in Europe, Van Basten is not even mentioned, i would just take the list and dump it, a complete loss of time there is no other way to describe it. This is confusing and misguiding to whomever really wants to undesrtand something about soccer.

  • anon

    these lists never seem to include female players, if it's about all time it should include them too, i can't say i know many or anything, but Mia Hamm should probably be on any list for best soccer players, she still holds the record international goals in their career male or female with 158,

  • Pingback: Top 20 Football Players Of All Time |

  • Jdghgh

    I won’t try to rank, but I will group into tiers

    Pele. Zidane. Maradona.
    Cruyff. Platini. Beckenbauer. Best. Ronaldo.
    Yashin (tough to classify goalies) van Basten. Puskas. Maldini. Baggio. Muller. Zico. Raul. Figo
    A few others….

  • Jdghgh

    Also….I’m happy to see Zidane number one. At this point in time he is just starting to lose the sting of the ‘headbutt.” In the coming years we’ll see more lists with Zidane on top.

  • ben williams

    pele, #1. beckenbauer should be in the top 3 atleast. and if ur one of those fags that think that portuguese pretty boy is bttr than the REAL ronaldo, u dont know soccer.

  • Bobidic

    Pele is the best soccer player of all time
    what is done no one never done it

  • hugo

    hugo sanchez??????

    Hugo Sanchez was one of the first Mexico soccer players to play in Europe at the highest level. He was an iconic player for Real Madrid between 1985 and 1992; 7 years in which he scored no less than 253 goals in 283 matches, a goal/match ratio that can hardly be rivaled. He also played for the Mexico national team on 60 occasions, scoring 29 goals and being an important player in the 1986 World Cup held by Mexico, in which his team managed to equal the quarter-final performance obtained initially in 1970. Hugo Sanchez is currently the manager and coach of the Mexican national squad.

  • ciara

    1. Lionel Messi
    2.David Villa

  • Manvel

    This is one of the worst lists ever !!!

  • Agustina

    dude, come on!!!!
    I’m uruguayan, and i cannot believe you’ve added Recoba to the list(and i like Recoba, so go figure). what the Fuc* is wrong with you. Have you ever watched football. Even if you were from Uruguay there are lots of players better than Recoba.

    To everybody who said it’s soccer not football. Go read a book. Football is that what you call soccer, soccer like you call it was invented before Football or Rugby or whatever.

  • Niall

    there's know way a goalkeeper is better than george best!

  • heath miller

    my top 20

    20. kaka (brazil)
    19. florence malouda (france
    18. steven gerrard (england)
    17.frank lampard (england)
    16. ronaldhino (brazil)
    15. pele (brazil)
    14. michel platini (france)
    13. david beckham (england)
    12. landon donovan (usa)
    11. nickolas anelka (france)
    10. claudio reyna (usa)
    9. david trezeguet (france)
    8. wayne rooney (england)
    7. didier drogba (ivory coast)
    6. thierry henry (france)
    5. christiano ronaldo (portugal)
    4. marcel desailly (france)
    3. ronaldo (brazil 1990's)
    2. francesco totti (italy)
    1. zenidine zidane (france)

  • jpmimoso

    This list=SHIT
    You didn't put names like

    Eusebio (Seriously, how could you forgot the 3rd best football player ever…)
    Stepp Meier
    Ruud Guulit
    Frank Rijakaard
    Marco Van Basten
    George Best
    Denis Law


    Other Mistakes:
    Zidane in 1st? What, are we in '06??
    Thuram, recoba (half of people don't know him) and Raul?!

    Dude, go learn something about Football…

  • dashty

    pele is #1

  • cinca

    1.Pele king
    2.Ronaldo fenomeno
    beckenbauer ,zidane or platini no skills,no speed,no shoot,romario was much better than zidane and beckenbauer

  • C.ronaldo sucks ass

    What bout ian rush or Robbie fowler leading goal scorers :D

  • Marc YNWA

    George Best, Kenny Dalglish, Bobby Moore, if Beckhams in there then I dont know where Gazza is. Van Basten, Bobby Charlton, and possibly messi in the future, apart from them its a decent enough list.

  • Lion


    Ronaldo is better player than Zidane.

  • oran power

    the best sud be
    5-george best
    8-frank benkenbauer
    10-gerd muller
    11-arjen robben
    13-jonh cruyff
    14-leonel messi
    15-bobby moore
    18-roberto bagio

  • Stevielad

    woeful list best shud be in the top 3 or at least in the fuckn list, and maradona, pele and cryuff wer all btr dan zidane


    ohh man, i don´t believe zidane is best of pele ??
    are you crazy man?

  • Ronaldo9

    you guys are all stupid who says 'thats the wrong ronaldo in pic'. At the age of only 19 he played for the first eleven in barcelona. Tell me the only player ever to become a legend at only the age of 21. Some kids dont understand how phenomenal Ronaldo was only at the age of 21. Like van basten, if it wasnt for the 2 injuries that stunted his potential. If not for those injuries he would have been the best ever. The list is bull shit but dont put down the Phenomenon that was Ronaldo. Look him up on youtube.

  • HgH

    Paul scholes should be on the list Zidane said that he was his toughest opponent.

  • nmn

    is this list some sort of a joke??

  • davyg

    lol recoba…forlan francescoli etc would be ahead of him as uruguayan players never mind best 20 in the world ever? several members of the current inter team would be more deserving than him. how can you leave out the greats and put an okay player for a few seasons.

    there is a serious lack of the greatest attacking trio charlton, law and best…none of them made the list somehow.

    Di Stefano easily has to be top 5, he was a machine he made Real Madrid what they are today.

    the latter half of the list is better than the start which was absolutely shocking and ultimately takes away all credibility. you just cant leave out charlton, best, eusebio, puskas, van basten even if you have personal favourites.

  • moorefan

    What happened to bobby Moore and geoff hurst

  • Adz

    No Eusebio or George best???? Utter madness

  • disgusted

    i am actually insulted by what i have seen. one premiership player was on that list…. that says it all…. its not as if liverpool and manchester united are 2 of the greatest teams to ever play and how many of the world class players appeared on the list alltogther? from the 1000s of players in united and liverpools history only one appered on that list. no disrespect to beckham but he would proberly wouldnt b in the top 10 manchester United players of all bobby charlton and goerge best wernt good enough to get in the list even though they where regarded as the 2 best english league players. Moore? was he not good enough as well? thats what happens when you get a sweaty fat american who has proberbly never watched any of these players play "soccer".

  • jk2

    This list is appalling…

  • Merikel

    1 Pele
    2,3,4 Maradona, Zidane, Ronaldo Phenomenon
    5-10 Cruyff, Puskas, Di Stefano, Zico, Best, Beckenbauer
    11-20 Eusebio, Platini, Romario, Ronaldinho, Zico, Muller, Van Basten, …
    20-50 ….C.Ronaldo, Messi, Figo, Beckham, Thuram,R.Carlos, Makelele,
    Laudrup, R.Baggio, Batistuta,…
    51-200…. T.Henry, Raul Gonzalez, Ruud Van Nistelroy,Kaka',Peter Cech,
    Fernando Torres, Wayne Rooney, John Terry – Chelsea, Lampard,
    Xavi, David Villa, Didier Drogba, Steven Gerrard, Zlatan Ibrahimovic…
    Goalkeepers 1- Yashin 2-20 …Buffon, Chech, Kahn…

  • best

    1.Pele king 2.Ronaldo fenomeno 3 Garricha …100.Zidane

    IN the mid/late 90s Ronaldo was best player (not just footballer) of the world,other greats at that moment like Batistuta,Rivaldo,Weah…Where was Zidane?I hearded Zidane since 2001( when he moved to Real Madrid) ,Before a decade,Zidane was nothing,even Ronaldo was best player of 98 World Cup ,Sukur was top scored of 98 World Cup,and Ronaldo won 96,97 world player of year,Baggio,Romario,Weah won 93,94 and 95 world player of year,where was zidane at that moment?

  • momed123fine





  • charlie

    ^ Deserves to be on this list, if not in the Number 1 position, then at least in the top 5

  • Daniel hills

    WHAT ZIDIN ZADAN BETTER THAN PELE THAT IS BULLCRAP ZZ SHOULD BE 4 and why isnt cantona on the list he was amazing he was the perfect player and he karate kick someone wooooooooo

  • vanuatu

    i dont get y ronaldo (brazil) is first….

    hes the phenomenon and ronaldihno one of my favoriets

  • Mahyar

    It was really comic!







    7.Franz Beckenbauer


    9.Eric Cantonna.


  • ramsey hundal

    zizou i deserved to be number 1 he is the best

  • amur

    1 Ronaldo (he was best player in the world in the 90s and early 00s,in 96-98 he was best ever,twice world cup winner,world cup top scorer ever)

    2 Pele (he was best player in the world in the 60s with his 1281 goals record)

    3 Beckenbauer (He was greatest EURO Player ever,one of greatest players in world cup )

    4 Zico (he was greatest NO10 since Pele)

    5 Maradona (won the 86 world cup by himself)

    6 Cruyff

    7 Puskas

    8 Platini(greatest FRANCE Player)

    9 Meazza (italy best player ever)

    10Stéfano (spain best player)

  • julian aspinall

    man you should realy consider putting ronaldinho at least in the top 10 I mean even PELE admited that ronaldinho was better player than pele when he was in his good days now he is all consumed by drugs.

  • MHD

    Guys, you are talking about the best in the HISTORY not for the current periods.

    I'll add the best defence in the history :
    Paolo Maldini
    Franco Baresi
    Belly Costacurta

    They give AC Milan a unique record of having gone a whole season without losing a game, during the 1991–92 season. In total, that unbeaten streak lasted 58 games.

  • the truth

    Was this list wrote by an American? David Beckham would never get into any real football fans top 20 players of all time.

  • sportmanko

    Lowestoft Albion FC need football players !

    Are a newly-formed club that have just been accepted into the Lowestoft and District League.

    At current, we have a young and ambitious squad but are looking to add to this. We are looking for players of all positions but would like to find an able and confident goalkeeper.
    We are looking for experienced players who have played at this level of football aswell as young players with determination and potential.

    [email protected]

  • m.zubair alam

    hi.. my name is zubair and i lthree palyers 1 is ronaldinho 2is messi and 3 is zidane and i play like messi even better than messi i m lover of soccer my life is soccer and i want to join a soccer club in uk or spain…

  • bruno

    are mad? zidane is not better than pele, and never will be, without a mistake and that size, besides being pele the best soccer player of all time! it is the athlete of the century!

  • fucker

    pelé should NEVER by ANY MEANS be anything less than 1st.

  • BragZZ

    DUDE!!!…WHERE THE HELL IS BUFFON!!!…..and the great LIONEL MESSI!!!!!!………???????????

  • killborten

    Too American

  • erik

    whoa whoa where david villa ? hes far better than Beckham

  • poopskin

    Pretty shit list in my opinion has missed a lot of great footballers.

  • Josue Sanchez

    There are far better players than beckham. He does not even deserve to be even considered for this list. I'm an american and I watch the mls. I thought beckham was going to take the spotlight of the game, but out of nowhere came cuauhtemoc blanco who played for chicago fire. He played the game like he wasn't even trying and he stilled kicked a lot of grass. With him the team had their best season records in a long time. With him taking the spotlight, beckham faked injuries and instead of facing him like a true soccer player, he fled.

  • upper90magazine

    A good strong list you have here! I also think Zidane is the best of all time, partially due to my age but he was another level!

    Another interesting debate is where are the next superstars coming from… try reading

    The Championship, the ‘wonder kids’ shop window!

    to see what we think!

  • John

    Where the fuck is George Best, he's undoubtedly the best.

  • Sahil

    heres my my list
    top three i cant find out who is better
    top three:maradona, pele, zidane
    5. ronaldo (brazil)
    6.ibrahimovic (his inter milan times)
    7. messi (he could get to top 5 if he really improves)
    8. ronaldinho
    9. buffon

  • Gilbert

    Ronaldinho is the best

    • Steven

      You obviously dont know soccer

  • asd

    wtf??????Pele 2!!!!tha athlete of the century 2??!!!

  • The Real List

    Raul? Recoba? Beckham! This list is a joke right? A real top 20 would probably go something like this: 1. Pele 1. (tie) Maradona 3. Cruyff 4. Di Stefano 5. Beckenbauer 6. Eusebio 7. Garrincha 8. Zidane 9. Lev Yashin 10. Platini 11. Zico 12. Ronaldo (the original) 13. Roberto Baggio 14. Marco van Basten 15. Paolo Maldini 16. Bobby Charlton 17. Franco Baresi 18. Gerd Muller 19. George Best 20. Lothar Matthaus

    • E. Mike Hunt

      Thank God you wrote that list out… I’ll agree with you a hundred percent. I hope everyone sees this list. Let’s take down the other piece of sh*t list and put this one up. This is one of the better and more accurate lists I’ve seen. Thank you for posting it.

    • Steven

      Finally someone on this goddamn page posts a list that doesnt SUCK!!

  • Uncle Tom

    this is a bullshit list….where's Hugo Sanchez? and Pele below that French prick lmfao pleaseeeee

  • garth

    Too many Europeans on this list, Raul is an lower average striker, he has a great midfield to service him. Cant be in top 20 much more top 10.
    What about George Weah (not because his national team banded from FIFA) and Roger Milla (oldest to score at world cup and single handly took Cameroon to quarter finals).
    Then there is Beckham free kicks or he can sit and watch.
    Gaurincha, Socrates, Zico, Tostao
    Dino Doff as keeper far better than Kahn.
    Most importantly the "Black Pearl" has no equal so however you want to order it PELE is the GOAT

  • Sam

    Ronaldo 3 times best player of the world
    Scored more gols than anyone in world cups
    Won 2 world cups n went to the final 3 times.
    Scored 2 gols in the final of 2002 in the best keeper of the world
    How the fuck can u people compare Cristiano Ronaldo with the real Ronaldo R9?
    bitches please!!!

  • osmkk

    totally stupid! Becks is a great player, but he does not deserve the list. So does ronaldo n raul n many others. And zidane should be on the list, but he wont come anywhere in the top five. In all the lists ever made its either pele or maradona on top place. And you missed so many great players like garincha, maldini, dinosof to name a few. I guess u haven’t played this game at least once.

  • … — …

    NO NO NO NO NO!!!!!! Zidane is maybe fourth or fifth, AT MOST. Pele is number 1, or that could be Maradona, depending on your view of the matter…

    • Steven

      Maradona is overrated. The best soccer player ever is between Pele, Cruyff, and Beckenbauer

  • Carlo

    Are you crazy? Zidane # 1?. Maybe #5 but not any higher and that is giving him the benefit of the doubt. He is not even close to the level of some other players on the top!

  • grunz

    is this a joke?????!!!!!!!!!what the fuck…zidan above pele…its according to you…dont give wrong information to others..and second is cruffy zidan should come in 7-10th position

  • andres ochoa

    dude you are missing alot of players ….. messi xavi iniesta bobby charlton ronaldinho and pele is by far the best player to ever touch a soccer field so put him first now!!

  • Carlos

    Zinedine Zidane number 1?????? are you kidding me???? how in the world is he above pele!!!!!!!!! outrage!!!!! I demand a recount if anything Zinedine Zidane
    should be up in the 20s!!!!!

  • Ernst

    Alvaro Recoba? Were you drunk? How about Schtoijkov, Hagi, Baggio, Charlton, Gullit and 100 more before him? Thuram? etc etc etc. Pele is always FIRST, Maradona 2nd, Cruyff 3

  • atenkeng

    Good one but Zidane cannot be considered as the world’s best.
    A list with no africans, after what Roger milla and Weah did,i don’t
    buy yuour idea.

  • ????? ????????

    ???? ????? ???? , ??? ?????!!!

  • greg dube

    I do not know were you get this from but i think Steven Gerard should be there in the top 20

  • dave

    top 7 cant be argued from there on id keep a few but pretty poor, and people saying messi ronaldo ect. you cant be a great of all time in your 20’s still to much to do.

  • robby

    this guy who posted the list has some questionable names like recoba, beckham etc. there is also no puskas, and no van basten as well. HOWEVER, the guy knows football since he got the best player ever right – zidane. and at the end of the day he got it right. so i would say, good brother, you know football better than most people are giving you credit.

    • E. Mike Hunt

      Broseph… are you French? Because only Frenchmen think Zidane is the best who ever played the game. I have testimonials from some of the worlds greatest players who have played with both Pele and Maradona, and they ALL agree and have stated Maradona was by far the better player ever. Just because Pele brought football to the United States and popularized it doesn’t make him better. Just because he was a great finisher, doesn’t make him better. And there’s NO mention from anyone ever that Zidane is the greatest player ever. Yeah he was fantastic and definitely deserves to be in the top 10, but don’t spout off your pretentious bullsh*t about “this guy knows the game, he knows what he’s talking about, he got it right at the end of the day” because that’s just revealing your actual amount of knowledge about the game. Congrats on calling yourself out and throwing yourself under the bus.

  • jimmy

    where is Peter schmeichel in this list? Best keeper in history!
    And what is Thuram doing here?

  • Aldolini

    I think Zidane he was excellent player but I give you my glasses 4 put him in the fist plays he can be 7 plays

  • E. Mike Hunt

    What joke of a human being trying to pass as a football fan made this idiotic list? This is a list made up by someone who obviously doesn’t know enough about the game or its players to come up with a proper list… in which case, you shouldn’t be making lists like this in the first place. Do your research next time and make sure you don’t insult the players you failed to mention who deserve to be on this list, and take off the ones you have a crush on… they don’t deserve to be on here just because they’re famous.

  • ike

    i desagre with zidane being the best of all time. it should maradona, ronaldo, pele, zedane and i don’t think David Bekham name should be mentioned atall when we talk of best football players ever.

  • StephenJoyce

    Am, George Best is not on the list.

    That lunatic, Recoba and the one-trick-pony that is David Beckham are on the list, and GEORGE BEST IS NOT ON THE LIST!

  • bojanMJ

    where is Ronaldinho???

    • Steven

      Ronaldinho sucks and always has, even the creator of this list isnt stupid enough to put him in the top 20

  • livio

    man…. are u INSANE??? if, we ask Zidane, he absolutely will tell the same. He won two world cups! ok, Pelé won 3. Just for the start. He maybe be fine togheter with Ronaldo, (also 2 cups and 3 times best world player).
    so… do it again like this.
    1º pele
    2º maradona
    3º Franz Beckenbauer
    4º ronaldo 9
    5º zidane
    6º Johann Cruyff
    7º platini
    8º zico
    9º di stefano
    10º Paolo maldini (or puskas… anyone but no RAUL) Ronladinho Gaucho can be here too.

  • senyo uncle mechanique

    zidane is just a miracle people fail to recorgnise. he can simply do more if we want him to. how strong has those acclaimed players proof to be. zidane is th tyrant of world soccer. selfless and talented. Italians were smart u know,so they find ways to eliminate him because he has defeated the in euro 2000 which was already a pain. he is just tooooo good and we all knew it.

  • No namer

    Zidane should not be 1
    But definitely on this list

    • Steven

      i agree


    I think Top 10 Should be

    10- Zidane
    9- Patini
    8- Franz Beckenbauer
    7- Maradona
    6- Ronaldo(Brasil)
    5- Alfredo Di Stefano
    4- Garrincha
    3- Eusebio
    2- Ferenc Puskas
    1- Pele

  • Emmanuel Nii Charway

    Why you people forgot Roberto Baggio but I still admire Zizou as the best footballer of all time.

  • Muneer

    I agree Zidane is greatest player ever.

  • chris

    can i ask why the fuck george best is not in the top three atleast and i think he was the best footballer ever but thats cause im a fan but he should atleast be in the top 3 he used to come on the pitch drunk and still manage to run past the whole team imagine if he didnt come on the pitch drunk and plus he hardly ever turned up for training and he even took his football boot of in the middle of a match thats legendary theres no other football player that could do that and zinedene zidane 1st come on wtf u obviously dont know a lot about football u stupid dickhead fucking van der sar is proberly better than him and hes a goalie

  • Frederic Camara

    The fact that i can press control – f and not find Hagi on this list makes me sad. very sad.

  • rudy

    Its Futball and i want to know why isnt Jorge Gonzales in this list he is clearly in top 5 best futball players of all time even the great maradona him self admitted to his greatness?

  • rudy

    3.Jorge “El magico Gonzales”
    5.roberto carlos
    10. figo

    and in 15 years ill have lio messi as #1 if he keeps playing like he does

  • archworf

    Top 20 soccer players. Even in your countries (Narnia, Mordor, whatever) where you don’t usually call soccer soccer, everyone knows what one means by soccer. Why not avoid confusion? Or, you could spell it the way most of its worldwide fans do, futbol. Okay, you might have had it first, call it what you want in Old Blighty, but I’ll bet a majority of clicks on this page were looking for the N. F. L., not field hockey without the sticks.

  • nayla

    love u all

  • Donsk

    Better top 20 90S-2011 as im not old enough to remember the others!!! no.20 Roberto Baggio no.19 Gabriel Batistuta no.18 Roberto Carlos no.17 Raul no.16. Ryan Giggs (20 years later & still going strong!!!) no.15 Paul Gascoigne no.14 Oliver Kahn no.13 Peter Schmeicel no.12 Paulo Maldini no.11 Romario no.10 Jurgen Klinsman no.9 Seedorf no.8 Luis Figo no.7 Christiano Ronaldo no.6 Messi no.5 Ronaldo no.4 Thierry Henry no.3 Dennis Bergkamp no.2 Eric Cantona no.1 William Prunier

  • Donsk

    Just kidding bout last post!! no.1 is Zinedine Zidane over the last 20 years!!!

  • Donsk

    Also top 10 most overrated footballers who i’ve seen enough of!! no.10 Edgar Davids no.9 Javier Mascherano no.8 Iker Casillas no.7 Harry Kewell no.6 Niklas Bendtnar (only by himself:) no.5 Veron no.4 Jens Lehman (again only by himself!!) no.3 Carlos Puyol no.2 Francesco Totti no.1 Zlatan ibrahimovic, extremely hard to think of players but totti n ibrahimovic are 2 of the worst so called football superstars ive ever seen play they have no impact no flair especially ibrahimovic why hes worth 30million? i wouldnt pay 3 million

  • Amidst

    Beckham, top 20 fashion icon maybe, as a footballer wouldn’t make the top 500, as for these plonkers nominating Gerrard, he’s not even the best player to play for Liverpool, ask your dads about king kenny dalglish, real supporters know their clubs history, idiots!

  • vinod

    Enter your comment here.i do not think Ronaldo has got the position he merits,considering all he achieved collectively,but more especially,individually.He should at least be amongst the top 5. I equally do not see why David Beckham should be part of this list,he only has a magnificent right foot, but i do not think that foot of his has done more wonders than those of french man Thiery Henry. what do yo think guys?

  • mufc

    if you don’t have george best in your top 5, you’re a twat. you don’t even have him in the top 20. beckham doesn’t belong in here either.

  • makarob

    Messi are not needed in top 20 players.. get use to it. U forget few players like Ferench Puskas, Marco van Basten and George Best. And i think that u should change Maradona’s and Ronaldo’s places :D

  • Bob


    Zizou better then Pele, that’s impossible

    also need more modern list here consisting CR7, Messi, plus a few phenomenal players

  • nooon

    ryan giggs is not there is this a joke ?

  • night crawler

    ronaldinho????? okocha who taught ronaldinho??? where are they,micheal Owen??, arjen robben?? shevchenco?? eric cantona,this list is ribbish.

  • Steven

    Half of this list is great, with Cryuff, Pele, Beckenbauer, and Yashin, to name a few. The other half sucks. Who puts Beckam, Thuram, and Recoba in the top 20 EVER!?!?!

  • Steven

    Here is my top 20, somewhat in order
    Di Stefano

  • ihgb

    I hate George W. Bush

  • Rômulo

    You must be kidding…

  • andrian

    pele is number 2 i think pele is number 1 1281 goal

  • Rory

    This is not a ligitimate listing. Its a joke. Anyone who knows anything about football was probably laughing about it while they were reading it. David Becham, good player and nice guy but George Best, Bobby Charlton, Denis Law and probably Ryan Giggs and Paul Scholes were all better players in Manchester to name a few. Where are they? And recoba! haha There should be an apology put with this list!
    In Ireland we call it soccer because we football is gaelic football and in australia, football is aussie rules football too.

  • lfc

    how the hell is Zidane better than Maradonna and Pelé?! and what about Garrincha?!

  • john


  • sam

    Maldini, Baresi, Scirea,Garrincha, Cafu,Scholes,Redondo,Puskas,Charlton,Moore, Nilton Santos, Didi,Matthaus,Van Basten,Gullit,Rijkaard,Hagi,Stoitchkov,Xavi,Messi,Valdarama,Romario,Baggio

    All of these great players dont make the list but f*cking David Beckham ,Raul & Recoba do? What type of crack were you smoking when you came up with this?

  • anushree

    the truth is, messi, kaka, christiano, and ronaldinho are better than bekham. And micheal ballack is brilliant too. So david has absolutely no place out here. But if batistuta, aesubio and the like are not in this list, and zidane is said to be better than maradona or pele or franz, who on earth can expect some proper rankings?? Really, I am just happy that at least he did not put himself in the list, and say he used to play football as a kid!!!

  • almightypoet666

    why is ronaldinho not in this list?

  • Finnster

    its actually an alrite list :)

    appart from:
    Roberto Carlos
    Maybe Figo

    wot about Messi, C ronaldo, Cantona and Kaka

  • zizou

    What about the likes of Rivaldo, Ronaldinho(Brazil),Roberto Baggio(Italy), Ruud Guilt(Dutch)just to name a few and not forgetting George Weah(Liberia) the only African footballer to win FiFA Footballer of the year. David Beckham…hilarious, putting him on the list is an insult to a soccer fratenity at large. He’ll never make it on my Top 100 Fooball Players Of All Time.

  • amine abdalkhalki

    i like zidane but maradonna is far better then zidane and pele,
    for me it’s the number 1

  • Where’s best

  • Ryan G

    This list is a lot of crap what about the best player ever and many of professionals say it thrmselves including pele, zindane, giggs etc, GEORGE BEST

  • Joe


  • Siem Minthang Gangte

    I personally think in my opinion about who being the greatest footballer is, I believe the greatest player in the world is not born yet, He is yet to come.
    Well you won’t agree I know it, but it is the truth.

  • sarthak

    i dont believe this.zidane isnt better than pele or maradona.its also shocking not to see c.ronaldo and messi in this list.

  • shitface

    thierry henry??????

  • Robb

    Recoba??? Are you kidding me?

    For a midfielder, how about Scholes or Giggs?

    And higher than Figo???

    Quite clearly not written by a football fan!

  • Dontworry


  • Oui

    When I first saw Thuram on number 20, I knew right away this list would suck ball. And it does suck ball.

  • Cesar

    This list is very unobjective. Zizou is indeed the best player in the last decades but ain’t any better than Pele and Maradona under any circumstance; they are both the faces of the game and the icons, in any case the debate should be who of they 2 is #1. Also, omitting Ronaldinho while players like Raul, Beckham and Thuram are on the list is simply nonsense, he is the second after Zizou in the last decade, at least. Anyway, nice try

  • Pingback: Top Ten List of greatest soccer players: E. Hatcher’s list v. W. Hatcher’s list (Part 4) « HaltingArkansasLiberalswithTruth()

  • Pingback: Top Ten List of greatest soccer players: E. Hatcher’s list v. W. Hatcher’s list (Part 4) « HaltingArkansasLiberalswithTruth()

  • Doda

    Alvaro Recoba!!! Recoba! Beckham as wellb! C’mon now. Someone must have just played the FIFA game and saw these players in the All-Star team. Recoba is nowhere near players like Ronaldonho, Pavel Nedved, Fernando Redondo, Fernando Hierro, Peter Schmeichel, Jean-Pierre Papin, Ruud Gullit, Marco van Basten…

  • JC

    Why your game is called football,I don’t understand……….the players throw the ball around???

  • kangkan

    This list is not satisfying me. I think Ronaldinho is the top 10 players in the world.

  • Daniel

    The clear 7 greatest player to have never played in a world cup are Alfredo Di Stefano, Jose Manuel Moreno, George Best, Valentino Mazzola, Adolfo Pedernera, Gunnar Nordahl and Ladislao Kubala.

  • Daniel

    1. Pele
    2. Maradona
    3. Di Stefano
    4. Beckenbauer
    5. Cruyff
    6. Platini
    7. Zico
    8. Puskas
    9. Garrincha
    10. Zidane
    11. Muller
    12. Eusebio
    13. Ronaldo
    14. Yashin
    15. Best
    16. Charlton
    17. Van Basten
    18. Maldini
    19. Matthaus
    20. Matthews

    Players close:
    Roberto Baggio
    Jose Manuel Moreno
    Ruud Gullit

  • Michael

    Omg this is the worst football list i have ever seen firstly where is geroge best second beckham not in a million years thridly lionel messi has to be on this list he is the best in the world atm and without dought one of the best ever and he is only 24 zidane is no way the greatest yes he should be on the list but not even to 5 What about Liam Brady an amazing passer not on the list Roberto Carlos no way should be on the list thuram wtf not even top 100 of all time you really know nothing about football only about 5 or 6 on this list should be seen as one of the 20 greatest the rest is a joke

  • Cory

    your full of shit Maradona was an still is the best!

  • bricktop

    Recoba, Becks, Thuram, R. Carlos, Koeman, Gentile? Where are Best, Eusebio, Cantona, Van Basten, Rivera, Maldini?

    • Kilmister

      Recoba????????????????????jajajajajajajaja You are very funny

  • amir

    where is Gianfranco zola???

  • ayo

    very strange list. what is beckham doing in this list. I like beckham personally, but he doesn’t belong in this list.

  • Jonoproject

    Zico’s definitely top 10 and ffs Beckham…?
    and where’s Puskas, Garrincho, Best, Maldini, Eusebio? Surely 720 somthing goals in 715 games is good enough for a top 20 and Best can replace Beckham’s spot for all I care

  • rik

    George best should top this list

  • Andrew

    seriously wheres ronaldo and messi? dude you haven’t got a clue on half of this list. messi is the best of all time

  • Andrew

    no he’s not. half of this list is better than zidane, and not just in sportsmanship. IF it comes to headbutts in the world cup than yes zidane is number one. but he’s not even top ten of all time

  • Dan

    Pele, best, maradonna, zidane, beckenbaur, b. charlton, eusabio, puskas, platini, van basten, cruyff, zico, ronaldo(brazilian), ronaldinho, baggio, cannavaro, moore, maldini, di stefano, Messi

  • Ronaldo

    not putting roberto baggio and ranking maradona third tells me you are a foooooooooooooooooooooooool

  • Oliver

    This list is not realistic because I can’t see the Football Legend after King Pele.
    Where is King George Weah of Liberia and how was the placement done in the first place?

  • angry

    Pele is 1st , maradona 2nd, and Zidane 3rd. GET IT RIGHT!!!!!!!!

  • Tommy

    1) PELE
    3) PLATINI
    4) CRUIJFF
    5) ZIDANE
    9) MESSI
    10) YASHIN

  • The lists should have been based upon the number of awards honoured individual players as well as trophies obtained for his countries and clubs.Brizilian Ronaldo could have been placed first follwed by Ronaldinho

  • Simon

    Great list – and interesring comments. To do it properly you need to be fair in covering different positions and different eras evenly. Not easy. This great website I found makes a good job of it:

  • ledley king of kings

    Do not agree with this list Beckham should not be in the top 20, he was a good player no doubt but not top 20 ever in the world. Will name a few english players that were better then him in my opinion.





    Also who really thinks Beckham or Recoba are better than any of the players below

    Thierry Henry

    Van Basten




    You can now add Messi and Ronaldo to that list

  • Federic

    First Zidane?? Come on. From that list Maradona is the best,. And Ronaldihnho and MEssi??

  • suck

    fucking worst list ever! Zidane is the greatest? – go fuck yourself!

  • zygmund

    you honestly mean Beckham comes before Bobby Moore,George Best,Puskas etc.I think you need help

  • paul-wizzy

    #1 = pele

    #2 = johann cruyff

    #3 = diego armando maradona

    nuff said.. fuck beckham. he dnt belong in d top 20 list, zidane is a calliber of top 20 but cmon man not number 1. dats a insult to pele

  • Robin

    Have you guys missed Ryan Giggs!?!?!?

  • What do Americans know about football?

    But in all honesty, I’ll justify your decision of putting Zidane before Pele and Maradona, but before we get to that, explain your blasphemy of including Thuram, Carlos, Beckham, Raul, Recoba, Torres, Koeman? Where is George Best? Eusebio? Puskas? And Ronaldinho? You’re a fucken retard, you google a couple of your Wikipedia pages and think you know football? And that blunder of saying Pele is the greatest footballer in the history of the game yet he’s 2nd is a dead give-away. Your mother should disown you, you’re bringing shame to the game. With that being said, Yes I agree with you, Zidane is the greatest of all time, before Pele and Maradona, why? Maradona was famous for beating England with a hand ball, then went on to get lucky against Germany, and he played in Italy, a league that Zidane dominated with Juventus, Zidane was man of the match against the best team of all time in the ’98 final, he didn’t get to play in the ’02 WC cos of injury, hence the best team of all time, Brazil, went on to win it, with the greatest striker of all time, Ronaldo, shaming Germany’s Oliver Khan in the final, he came out of retirement to be the MVP of the ’06 WC. Pele was a proven goal scorer, but lets be honest, having never played in Europe, he was still to be tested, he only knew recognisable glory around his Brazilian teammates, from Santos to the national team, Zidane was the star player from Juventus, to Madrid, until ’06 in his French number 10 jersey, thats 3 different teams, 3 different environments/leagues/competitions and 3 different types of crowds. He won every title there is to win for a player, Pele and Maradona have never won their continental championship, the Copa America, Zidane was the star player again at the ’00 Euro championships, when France had to defend their title in ’04 they lost to the eventual surprise winners Greece. He edges both of them for the number 1 spot. And all you useless spastics who keep putting in Gerrard and Cristiano Ronaldo here, Vidic and Gigi Buffon, this is an all time list, those people left their mark on the pitch, the people we want on this list are people who left marks on the game itself.

  • SimonAstonVilla

    For me Zidane was the best othershave different opinions and some might agree & i respect their choices, but i feel he’s too humble about it & puts Maradona before himself and a few people have said the great Dennis Bergkamp could control the ball like Zidane did, no doubt Bergkamp was a master tactician & i loved watching him at Arsenal and with Holland, but Zidane had a vision where he was ‘ahead’ of everyone on the pitch and that’s what led him to getting to the World Cup finals he did, plus i will say both Zidane & Bergkamp played with very good International players aswell, but obviously someones havin’ a laugh comparing Scholes to Zizou, i just think its the Man Utd fans in particular.

  • Billy

    All different types of football have a different name before them. Rugby Football, American Football, Soccer Football, It just so happens that Soccer Football is abbreviated more often.

  • Leo

    Zidane better than Maradona and Pele, are you taking drugs man?

  • *Marcelinho*

    Don’t bother changing Cristiano Ronaldo’s picture their because it WILL be there when he retires,And Maradona was even more arrogant then CR7.
    Alan Shearer??? Over 200 premier league goals nd a real Legend
    And obviously you can’t put Zidane ahead of Pele and Maradona

  • *Marcelinho*

    Ruud Voller? ERIC CANTONA?????????

  • Forino

    bunch of crack head shit this list is

  • Jim


    Ahead of Pele and Maradonna. Find a more better and more informed source for Footballers (Soccer players to you Americans).

  • gjgfjhhj

    where the fuk is george best and sir bobby charlton

  • Bob Joffer

    Wheres George Best

  • Jordan

    Are you fucking kidding me???

    Since when Zidane is the best player of the world? I mean, he is a good player indeed, but definitely not the best ever. Pele is the best player of the world. And there is no way to disagree with that

  • I am wondering hw and why Theiery Henry didn’t even get a mention. Surely he was a great player with wht he has done fo clubs an countries most notably Arsenal. And I wud put Ronaldinho in dere definately, he was pure magic.

  • bob

    no lampard or gerrard

    you are obviously bias, possibly to france?

  • jono

    WHERE is PUSKAS?????many others missing too. Beckham, really…Beckham? oh and all the comments saying messi and cristiano ronaldo…yeah right they don’t even come close, not yet anyway, once again where is PUSKAS

  • Toni

    what happen to Hugo Sanchez?

  • james mburu

    wow no comment

  • Henk de Wit

    Seriously ….where is Berry Van Aerle? This List is a joke!

  • praveer

    wtf… can u do such a list without king kenny dalgish not in the top 5… wat makes u feel that david beckham has been a better football player than steven gerrard,frank lampard,wayne rooney,batistuta,crespo,ryan giggs?????? lot more missing,wrong list,only one + ve thing,zizou first..:D

  • STU

    how could they forget henry??

  • Batigol

    Zidane at number 1 is idiotic

    He isn’t the best Midfielder of the last 20 years (that’d be Matthaus, or if you prefer someone who played closer to his position, Scholes)

  • Ryan

    Zindane is definately not the best player in the last 20 years. Messi should be above Zidane, Ranaldo, Christiano Ranaldo and Ronaldinho. Pele and Maradona, Beckenbauer and Cruyff should be pushed up followed by Messi and then Zidane. Christaino Ranaldo would also have to be up there (although hes a bit of a douche), and agreed Beckham should be completely left off

  • pundit

    Zidane Nb One… finally a listing that got it right

  • Chris

    lmao the biggest pile of shite i have ever read, do you know anything about football?

  • Conor

    Chris is a bitch, oh and this list of piss

  • Anthony Yeboah

    How come you ignored great players like Teddy Sheringham, Philipo Inzaghi, Ronaldinho and Del Piero? For David Beckham he deserves a place but not C. Ronaldo

  • nizoosa

    sizou….currect decition..he s great ever…amazing skill..gud leading power…

  • Zee

    WHERE’S RONALDINHO?! he for sure deserves to be on this list, he is a legend.

  • carlos

    Well, in spite here are some Sànish footballers (the best Di Stefano, without discussion), there are anothers.

    Brazilian Garrincha, best right extrem of all times. Eusebio, central forward of Portugal and Bemfica FC, big scorer, powerful shooter.Ferenc Puskas, originally from Hungary, coolssal centre forward of Real Madrid. George Best, from Northern Ireland

  • Anant Abhishek

    What Type of Ranking is this There is No Messi And Cristiano Ronaldo.They should be on the First Position.I don’t accept this ranking..

  • yabar666

    zidane???? french frogeater !!!stupid !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Dean

    You Guys to much Blah Blah Blah, What do you know about a Football or Soccer? Yes Zidane is Number one in the History. Let me tel you how fifa ranks or vote for the best players. Fifa don’t vote who dribbles the best or who scores a lot of goals no it doesn’t work that way. Talking about Messi of course Messi will not be in the list, if we remove Xavi and iniesta from Barcelena team Messi will do nothing, talking about Messi being in the list no iniesta should b, look Argentina team the Copa of America in Argentina with messi and lost. Fifa ranks the best players in the world based on their consistency how the play, how they do the job for their teammates, and how being a magician in the field and how basically achieves the goal and finishes their goal. We take an example of Zenidine Zidane in 1998 won the world cup, he tought Brazilian soccsers how we play Football it was a show, France never been in the world Cup final, Their best record is in 1982 semifinal lost to Germany in 2000 won the cup of Europe he give lecons to european players how we should play soccer, In 2002 Zidane did not play was injured France lost all the games in the first round, against Danemark, Senegal and Paragway, Zizou come back in 2006 at 34 years old he showed the world that his the grates the best Footballer ever the world seen that is true. Look at the two team in 2006 Italy and France check Italy with who the advance to the finale the only team the beat and was a little stroger then others is Germany in the semifinal all other games italy won them either by referee or with a weaker team like Ukrain, Australia and Paragway, even Italy beat Australia by penalty in the last minute there is no penalty. Look at the French team with their hero Zidane, the first round was very easy for France to win all three games Zidane did not want to offend other team Suisse, Togo and South Korea, but look France whom Faced against Brazil it was a carnavale, won 1-0 against Spain it was show won 3-1 against Portugal won 1-0 Please youtube any of this games you will see to your self what I am talking about. Italy won against Australia, against Ukrain and germany even germany team was weiker in 2006. That the legacy of Zidane, Can you imagine the whole team without Zidane never won a game, never advanced. to me Zidane is way superior then Pele and Maradona there is no player right know surpass the Magician Zenedine Zidane is Number one right know and far away from the past players and present players who knows how long it takes probably 20 to 30 to 40 years someone will come and breaks Zidane legacy, But for sure not Messi not Chris Ronaldo because these Footballers they can’t be in the list. these I call them the food is on the table come and eat, they don’t Farm the vegetables, they don’t grow their own Vege all of it is Made in China.

  • wok

    Wtf….Liverpool won the cl 5 the 2nd most title club in england…but why is it that such list always underestimate players that played for LFC.. do the effort of watching some videos of Kevin keegan,john barnes,Ian rush,King kenny…and there are more big names also….

  • tp

    If Beckham can make this list, where the hell is Cantana?????

  • nij

    no bobby charlton, george best, peter schmeichel, david seaman, gordon banks, stanley matthews or eric cantona???? other then that good list

  • Joe


    You have some great lists on your site but this one is not one of them… I believe only about 5 of them deserve to be in the list…

  • Ricardo

    Thuram, Beckham, Koeman, Recoba(who?) in the top 20…..Zidane first on the list…..were you on drugs?

  • Sirjan

    I think top 5 is
    1.pele:he is the all time best player in football.his play is mindbolwing

  • Paulie

    Rubbish. Without giving much thought, this would be my top 40 in no (galloping) major order…

    1. Di Stefano
    2. Maradona
    3. Pele
    4. Cruyff
    5. Best
    5. Platini
    7. Zico
    8. Puskas
    9. Zidane
    10. Romario
    11. Beckenbauer
    12. Ronaldo (The Original)
    13. Maldini
    14. B. Charleton
    15. Francescoli
    16. Kubala
    17. Kocsis
    18. Boniek
    19. Hagi
    20. Socrates
    21. Gullit
    22. Rivelino
    23. M. Laudrop
    24. Stoichkov
    25. Stojkovic
    26. Careca
    27. Bergkamp
    28. Sindelar
    29. Brady
    30. Dalglish
    31. Valderrama
    32. Eusebio
    33. Moore
    34. Scifo
    35. Fontaine
    35. Van Basten
    36. Gentile
    37. Batistuta
    38. G. Muller
    39. Ruminegge
    40. Garrincha

    So many more in fairness, but where do you stop? Some of the guys in the original list above wouldn’t make my top 500. Messi, Xavi and Iniesta will pop into their respective places when they retire…

    Seriously, Beckham? That’s about as appropriate as putting Posh Spice in your top 20 popular music list.

  • Hugh Jass

    No Best, No Puskas, No Bobby Moore.

    In short, no idea.

  • Anonomys

    What about them mexican players like he was easily as good as maradona but witout the steroids nd he is not up here

  • Anonomys

    Oooo nd dnt forget also robben. Sjneider. Lampard. Hugo sanchez. Jorge campos. Diego forlan. Wade rooney. Drogba. Lahm. Maicon. Puyol. Sergio ramos. Nd theres many more too

  • Shmay

    huh?!?! zidane over pele? u must b kidding and thurman, recoba, beckham? lev yashin needs to b higher and messi and C. Ronaldo(as much as i dislike him) needs to b on here somewhere. terrible list
    1. Pele
    2. Maradona
    3. Messi
    4. Beckambauer(dunno how to spell it)
    5. Brazilian Ronaldo(just cuz he has the most WC of all time)

  • Diego Maradona

    America’s soccer is a shit. hey think tyhey’re better tyhan everyone, but for all the world that so glorified blue, red and white falg is nothing. That’s why we can say we hate america and americans, or i can say shit and shitters.

  • evan

    thierry henry…no? one of the top3 strikers of all time..

  • evan

    i completly agree one of h best strikers ever


    i will be lik one of this mans one day by the God grace

  • james

    No Messi? No Andreas Escobar?

  • jajaja

    wheres ronaldo???????????!1

  • Jermaine

    LOL, Ronaldiniho? Rivaldo?

  • joas

    pele should be first

  • Antonis PAOK

    Alessandro Del Piero?

  • rex

    How can Zidane be number one,and Maradona number 3 -______-

  • John Terry is nothing but a cart horse, why they ever gave him the captaincy of england back over Steve Gerrard I will never know,

  • Kyokioriy

    01. Maradona
    02. Pele
    03. Zidane
    04. Ronaldo
    05. Cruyff
    06. Beckenbauer
    07. Ronaldinho
    08. Messi
    09. Zico
    10. Garrincha
    11. Di Stefano
    12. Puskas
    13. Platini
    14. Eusebio
    15. Banks
    16. Romario
    17. Zoff
    18. Bergkamp
    19. Figo
    20. Seedorf

  • Kyokioriy

    I can see there are many people that don’t know much about football.

  • bryan gomez

    where ronaldinho gaucho

  • jack ellison

    were is gorege best he was the best ever even when he was old he was spictaculare

  • Bob

    Where’s Marco Van Basten

  • john john

    #1Pele 1281
    #2Diego Maradona
    #Zinedine Zidane

  • alpar


  • alex

    The list of names are okay but in no way Ronaldo should be 7 he’s way better than a few you have ahead of him.

  • Pigeon

    Zidane?! Is this a joke?!
    1. Pele
    2. George Best
    3. Diego Maradona
    4. Sir Bobby Charlton

  • footballer

    good list but…. where is cristiano ronaldo?I mean luis figo is good but cristiano…

  • Sassa

    Thoso who know a little bit of soccer history, not only from the last 10 years but since the beginning of last century would never agree with some of these comments as well as the result of this research. Recoba, Carlos A Torres (although im brazilian and like him), Figo, Koeman, Turam, Oiiver Kahm, Beckham and Roberto Carlos should never figure even in a top 100 list. What about names like Garrincha, Rivelino and Romario ? All of them won a world cup and many titles within clubs they played. Here comes the correct list :

    1. Pele (best in history and no doubt with 1281 goals and 3 world cups)
    2. Maradona (I hate to admit)
    3. Zico (show me a middle field that scored 900 goals. Lost world cup in 78 because Argentina paid Peru to lose the match in the semi finals and was unlucky in 82 when the fabulousa brazilian team lost to Italy from The lucky Paolo Rossi who did nothing else in his whole carrear than score the 3 goals in that match in Spain)
    4. Zidane
    5. Ronaldo
    6. Beckembauer
    7. Rivelino (world champion in 70 with Pele and as Zico should be world champion in 78 when Brazil was eiminated without losing a single match in the cup)
    8. Garrincha
    9. Cruyff
    10. Platini
    11. G. Muller
    12. Di Stefano
    13. L. Matheus
    14. Romario
    15. Socrates
    16. Batistuta
    17. Ademir da Guia
    18. Humberto Fijol (Goalkeeper from Argentina 10 times better than Oliver Kahn)
    19. Rodolfo Rodriguez ( Goalkeeper from Uruguay 2nd best in history)
    20. Baggio

    This is the best list of top 20 best soccer players in history. If you really know soccer history you will agree with me. Of course those who dont have a clue of soccer history and lack commom sense would never agree.

  • Vlad

    WTF!! where is MALDINI???

  • daniel


  • Bob

    Zidane is not better than Pele or Maradona

  • ermm..

    George Best.
    Need i say any more?

  • Paul

    I its high time we include messi and c.ronaldo on this list

  • Hugo

    Perfect list agree with almost everything and the top three is so right, maradona, pele, and the greatest zidane

  • Jimbob

    where’s Messi???????

  • Joseph

    Where´s Eusebio?

  • Rory

    Recoba over Gerrard? Kahn over Banks and Zoff? Koeman over Puskas? Lillian Thuram over Eusebio?

    This list is ridiculous!

  • ABarcaFan


    (In no order)

  • barry

    older players like best i cant say as i have not seen them play all i will add is the fitness levels now are hier and the game moves at a much faster pace now
    my top player would have to be

    Francesco Totti

    i have not seen him listed but must add i have not read all comments
    im from england but still i think he is the best of all time and the fact he has been at the same club all his playing life says he is loyal and not just out there for the bigest pay

    would like to add little ronaldo as i know him is well on his way
    and i here good things about messi but have not seen him play much

  • James Currie

    where the hell is George Best, even Pele said that Best was the best player of all time

  • FAbio

    My List
    The Top 50 Soccer Players Of All Time in

  • Nick Rougier

    Why are Romario, Josimar and other lengendary Brazilians of the 1970s not mentioned? This list seems far to Euro-centric

  • Lets think about something here when it comes to scoring goals. In the sport of Hockey, the combined total of goals scored by both teams is usually between 6-8 goals. In Football (Soccer) the combined total of goals scored by both teams is lower at about an average of 2-4 goals. Wayne Gretzky, the greatest goal scorer in NHL history had 940 career goals. Pele scored 1280 goals in his career. Now I am scratching my head over that statistic and would love to get an explanation over that fact !!

  • Fabio Lima

    The List Top 50 Soccer Players Of All Time

  • Hon chukwutem Nwogor

    Dida drogba,Okocha,C Ronada,Ronado,maradona,figo,zedeni zeden,pele,messi & eto

  • Moy

    where is hugo sanchez!!!!!!!

  • OlympiquedeMarseillerocks

    Look, although Pele has the most goals and the most impressive resume, ever, the level at the time he was playing is not at all comparable to today’s level.
    Which brings me to my argument: Zidane is the best, since he has been the most fair played (except for that Materazzi event which is justified), technical, talented, and modest player of the last two decades.
    Messi is very talented but I’m afraid that he’s gonna be one of those guys who plays good for 3-4 years and then nobody ever hears of him again.

  • Andy

    Sorry but a list like this without Michael Laudrup is not worth looking twice at. – Laudrup has had one of the best careers in all of soccer and is by many looked as one of the best players in the last 25 years, he actually got the award as the best Foreign player in the last 25 years in Spanish football (La Liga) …among the people he beat in the running for winning that prestigious award, are Zidane, Ronaldo, Beckham, Messi, Ronaldo (portugal), Roberto Carlos, Figo.. ect ect. – so you see this is a horrible list..- and where is peter Schmeichel, surely the best goalkeeper of all time..but you have Oliver Kahn ?! What the hell?

  • Andy

    ahem..Michael Laudrup :

    Romário: “The best player I have ever played with and the 5th best in the history of the game”
    Raúl: “The best I have ever played with.”
    Zamorano: “Un genio!”, “The reason why I make so many goals, is Laudrup.”
    Cruyff: “One of the most difficult players I have worked with. When he gives 80–90% he is still by far the best, but I want 100%, and he rarely does that.”
    Cruyff (After Real Madrid with Laudrup had won 5–0 over Cruyff’s Barcelona): “When Michael plays like a dream, a magic illusion, determined to show his new team his extreme abilities, no one in the world comes anywhere near his level.”
    Platini: “One of the biggest talents ever. The best in the world on the training pitch, but never used his talent to its full during matches.
    Platini: “Michael had everything except for one thing: he wasn’t selfish enough.”
    Guardiola: “The best player in the world, I can’t believe he hasn’t won the title as best player.”
    Beckenbauer: “Pelé was the best in the 60s, Cruyff in the 70s, Maradona in the 80s and Laudrup in the 90s.”
    Roberto Galia: “I have played against Maradona, Platini and Baggio. But the player I saw do the most indescribable things was Michael Laudrup.”
    Clemente: “To me, Michael Laudrup is the most genius player the world has ever seen. He will always be my numero uno. Always.”
    Bakero: “No one has given the club [Barcelona] as much inspiration as Michael. We all look up to him. It is a privilege to have your day enriched by a genius.”
    Koeman: “Michael was possibly the most skilful and elegant player I ever played with. Few could dribble like he could. He could sense when a game was ready to be seized and transformed by a moment of individual brilliance.”
    Stoichkov: “One of the best European players I’ve ever seen. An elegant, old-fashioned playmaker, he did things few other footballers could do.”
    Brian Laudrup: “My brother started as an attacker but became an elegant attacking midfielder, perhaps the most complete there has ever been. His vision, speed of thought and passing were on a different level; he always knew what was going to happen before anybody else did. If anyone had a ‘football brain’, it was him.”
    Ferrer: “Few people made me enjoy the game as much as Michael. Maybe he didn’t get the media recognition he deserved, but he was so classy and a real thinker. A master of the blind pass and impossible through-balls and I will never forget his ‘spoon’ pass in a game against Osasuna. He lifted the ball right over the defence and Romario touched it in first time.”
    Capello (After the 4–0 win of Milan against Barcelona in the 1994 CL final):”Laudrup was the guy I feared but Cruyff left him out, and that was his mistake.”
    Figo:”I think maybe Laudrup was the best player I ever played against.”
    Mourinho:”He was phenomenal in Barcelona. He was a fantastic player whom I would love to have on my team today.”
    Stoichkov:”Laudrup was the greatest”
    Iniesta:”Who is the best player in history? Laudrup.”

  • Pele should be number 1. The man was a sheer force of nature.

  • Matt Hammond

    A hosting company will supply “space/room” on the internet. You can get a hosting account with the same company you purchase your domain name.

  • I am not a very big fan of the sport (with the exception of the 1999 Women’s World Cup final with the U.S against China and when the U.S. beat them in overtime and getting to see Brandi Chastain’s athletic bra), so my question is this and I hope that I am not sounding like I just crawled out from under a rock. Why is the sport called SOCCER in the U.S.A. and everywhere else its called FOOTBALL. I know one of the rules of the sport and that your hands are not allowed to touch the ball unless you’re the goaltender. FOOTBALL would seem to be the appropriate name for the sport and who came up with the name SOCCER ??

  • Jobson

    Where it´s Garrincha??? He was criplled and one of the biggest players of all time. With all respect, you just wrote shit

  • gafoor

    wow super

  • I am also a George, just not the Best.

    George Best not in a Top 20 ??

  • Benjamin Tamba

    This list was compiled by people who are completely jockers and ignorant about soccer and you have angered me by publishing it. This is a complete jocke!!! If you have no better thing to do please do not play with such important issues because younger generations look for such information and this is not what they need to see. BE SERIOUS IN FUTURE PLEASE!!!!!!

  • prashant

    what I think which is right is that bekham certainly deserves a position in this list.each and every player mentioned were the best in their own fields and the same goes for bekham who surely is the best free kicker of all times.
    apart from this here is my top 10 list
    10 c. ronaldo
    9 M.Platinni
    8 van basten
    7 Eric cantona
    6 messi
    5 F beckenbaur
    4 Zidane
    3 george best
    2 pele
    1 maradona

  • Valdecy Junior

    Seriously! Zidane better than Pele? ‘re Wrong!

    • layla

      yeh he is duh who dont noe dat

  • I am from the United States and don’t follow Football / Soccer much, though I should. If there are any people in LISTVERSE land from the United Kingdom, could someone from there enlighten me on the British Football player Geoffrey Hurst and his accomplishments. Its my understanding that he scored 3 goals in a World Cup Football championship game I believe in 1966 or 1970. I would like to know more about him.

  • Rivelino

    Worst list ever! Haha

  • layla

    i like soccer but too much running

  • Cristiano ronaldo awards

    Christiano Ronaldo is a kind of player who are able to win over you only by way of the existence around the industry. Without a doubt, he’s got excellent ability as well as ultra manage on the ball …Cristiano Ronaldo hot

  • asdfjkl;

    Pele No. 2??? Unbelilevable! Ferenc Puskas should be on this list as well.

  • Geowyn

    I just found this list. Where the hell is Gordon Banks?

  • You will have to be out of ur mind to not have (george oppong weah) on this list… The only play ever to win (world best, african best, european best andbunch of other titles) smh… Ha!!

  • My top ten best 2.pele 3.johan cruyff 4.brazilian ronaldo 5.eric cantona 7.zico 8.teddy sheringham 9.diago maradono and 10.eosobi

  • ibbe

    Whers messi and goerge best,they are the best of best.and where did this beckham come from…

  • aviel

    where is ariel ortega?

  • deebo

    lol beckham hasnt ever won a player of the year award, and u add him on the list?

    Ronaldinho was ignored over beckham? seriously dude

  • bhargav

    this table is good in my view cos there is david backham (treasure of england)

  • Yam N

    Pre Injury Ronaldo was Extraterrestrial

  • jaygee

    Some of the players deserve to be on the list others don’t. I mean beckham? Come on. Khan? One of the top 20 goalkeepers sure but players? No way. As for messi and ronaldo fan boys, they need to perform on the world stage first. Messi has the potential to be the greatest of all time tho.

  • nATALie

    Theres no messi….

  • tom jones

    Recoba and Beckham shouold never ever make this list. Pelé is the best of all times and will always be, he should be number one easily. Saying that Messi or even Zidane (the best midfielder i’ve seen by far) are better than him is ridiculous. And leaving players like Garrincha, Romário and Bobby Charlton, who would easily be on top ten, out is just bullshit. Peace Out

  • Rui

    OMG. Recoba in this list? Shame on you. I might have included on the list Eusébio and Rui Costa from Portugal, but maybe because i’m portuguese too. Totally agree with the other 14 players. Messi is no doubt the #1 item on the list in the future.

  • Beaman

    Undoubtedly, Messi is the best ever and others follows ..

  • Veta

    No way Zidane is number one!!!!! I mean don’t get me wrong, He is a great player and deserves a spot in top 5, but pick him over PELE!!!!!!!!

  • Yohannes

    I’m not agree this table 1 Ronaldo 2 Zidane It’s enough best in the world

  • jj

    is this list a joke ????????????

  • Robin

    Everyone Has forgotten of a Brazilian by the name of Garrincha. He is by far the Greatest player that ever played the game. No Doubt.

    And yeah…

  • Robin

    Eusébio yes defiantly top 10 but Rui Costa would be top 100

  • Thorsun

    If you read the articles under the names under pele it says “was the greatest soccer player in the history of the game. ” Then why is he second he should be first.


    Pele is the CREATOR of Modern soccer… there is simply no way to compare him to anyone, except in head to head competition where he won 3 out of 4 world cups he played in… ( and only lost in 1966 because he was brutally targeted and forced out of the tourney ) and total league goals of 1284. He scored a goal in his first pro game and his last. Retired early and came back 5 years later( un- heard of ) to help the Cosmos win a NASL championship. Ask Zidane who is God, who is number one and see what he says.

  • Kevin

    you’re missing Didi, he definately made a bigger statement than some people. Although i do agree with the Zidane above Pele.

  • Paul

    Em. What? Lionel Messi is the best player the world has ever seen. He will break all records. Stick Messi back in Pele’s or Maradona’s era and he would outplay all footballers. Also, Zidane has never played in a bad team. Juventus – amazing, Real Madrid – amazing, France – outstanding. Messi’s Argentina are not a patch on any of these teams. Im not even a big fan. But he’s the best.

    • Andy9skill

      Complete crap, have you even watched any of the players on the list ?
      If Messi was the best player ever he would be fantastic on Argentina too. That just shows he is overrated he cannot perform the same as he does on Barcelona because he needs players like Xavi, Iniesta, Fabregas,etc. Without them he cannot perform the same.

  • Andy9skill

    Weres George Best ? he should be in the top 5.

  • To

    Zidane will never be on top of maradona, messi it has to be in the top 5 players. R9 its number one. Zizdane said it himself ” ronaldo its the best player in the world… Oh phenomono… Ala madrid.”


    Maradona should be first

  • carolina mazur

    u r a idiot… pele is the 1st maradona 2nd n zidane mayb the third dumb ass! PELE N MARADONA ARE LEGENDS U MORRON!!

  • Christiano Ronaldo

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  • Dug

    Where George the Best?

  • realdani12

    its ok. but i think pele should be no.1

  • Joe

    You forgot FERENC PUSKÁS.
    He changed the history of football when the Hungarians beated the British in Wembley.

  • Ryan

    maldini, best, puskas, van basten, cantona, baggio, giggs, seedorf, eusebio, charlton, moore, socrates, surely all more deserving of a place then recoba, figo, beckham & thuram

  • Koen (NED)

    Even so, the sport you play is called “American Football” and this is “Football”. Just as Polo and Water Polo are 2 diffrent games. Just as you call Ice Hockey Hockey, while here Plain Hockey is Field Hockey.

  • Koen (NED)

    Also you spelled Cruijff wrong. But, most english people spell it like that so whatever

  • deepak

    superb job guys :)

  • GG2012

    You must be on drugs or you are French. Zidane the best ever? You must have watched soccer only for the 10 years he played. Not even in the best 10 list.

  • GG2012

    For a real list, done by someone who knows what he is talking about, see:

    That one includes all the best players, ranked by several characteristics. Beckham in the best 20? That’s a joke. Not even in the best 200

  • riya suryavanshi

    my favour8 game is soccer

  • metzo

    it’s cool

  • Christian

    tell me exactly why ronaldinho isnt on this yet beckham is?! and why isnt messi or ronaldo on here .. u know nothing about soccer

  • Fabio Italia

    This list is bullshit, no disrespect! But where is Roberto Baggio? You must be out of your mind for not putting him in the Top 10, please get some knowledge and do your research. Zidane best player? pfff no comment.

  • Hareem

    Where is messsi on the list?? I think he should have made a good place on this list…:(
    while i saw messi on top slot at some places like this one..

  • Laz

    Have you ever heard about Ferenc Puskas?How come he is not on the list?

  • Toni

    This list is solid… near the end. Best, Eusebio, Van Basten, Scmeichel, Giggs, and Garrincha should be there. Cant remember if Mueller was there but if he isnt he should be. I agree with Zidane as number 1. Messi is/nor will he ever be anywhere close.

  • LOL


  • david

    wow i appreciate this was done a while back but now i’d say number one has to be lionel messi, as much as i don’t like christiano ronaldo he’s got to be in the top 20.
    oliver khan? schmeichel was a better keeper he aint there… beckham was good but not top 20, gascoigne was the best engish player, i’d stick him between 10 – 20.
    when i saw thuram at 20 i thought “oh boy, this is going to be interesting” LOL.
    if you’re just talking “best footballers”, whose the best on the ball and not in any particilar possition i’s also add rui costa and GEORGE BSET……GEORGE BEST HAS TO BE IN THERE!!!

  • Danny

    Where’s Heskey?

    • John Machin

      Germany 1-5 England and the chants were= FIVE ONE AND EVEN HESKEY SCORED, FIVE ONE AND EVEN HESKEY SCORED!

  • js

    no one has a clue
    leon messi is the worlds most wanted for any team to have so there you go
    that is the number one
    i know allot about football
    here is the top five
    5 demba pappis cisse
    4 alan shearer
    3 michael balack
    2 cristiano ranaldo
    1 leon messi

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  • wasimakram279

    if we see overall den obviously zidane is considered the best player ever,different lies in looking at player mode of ability to play with attitude psychology.however different people have different views but consideration lies in and depends upon people majority..there are many players who good performances litttle or more..but literally we look at past spirit of people across the globe then zidane should be considered the greatest player of all time cause it doesnot matter which player you are fan of…

  • Ballplayer

    Many good players missing here like: fernando hierro, mathias sindelaar, FERENC PUSKAS, garrincha, Maldini, Best, romario and of course Heskey :P players that do not belong on this list: Recoba (WTF?), becks, koeman and Thuram

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  • IFTI

    George Best is The Best

  • Bleedblue

    Thuram? Recoba????? Ummmmm yeah???

    Not a Man U fan but have to respect Giggs and Scholes.

    Maldini is a definite.

    And just because…… Drogba, Lampard, Terry, Cole etc etc etc.

  • João Rafael Ferreira

    hahahahahhaha… the worst list ever. just no sense

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  • raul77

    you are drunk man how can you compare that nincompoop messi with these guys

  • Liam Jackson

    Pele should be first by a long shot, he can’t be compared with no one especially messi because everyone says messi is only 24 and best player in the world but at 17 pele won the world cup and excelled at club an international football and was named player of the century, messi has nothing on pele, maradonna should be second and zidane third eusabio should be on list.

    • Me

      Pele is good, but not the best.

  • danny

    I’m confused. It said right there under Pele’s picture that Pele is the best soccer player ever, but he’s second! (o__O)

  • John Bon

    This list is a complete joke, who ever made it up, does not have a clue.

  • Petr

    Where the hell is MESSI

  • Zippy

    ???????????? – I don’t think so

  • Mulindwa Andrew

    PELE the man of all time.
    I think there was a mistake because some of you think that Messi is good. yes he is but not that class of Zidane he has only played for only one club yet others proved there talent in different clubs. Messi could not make the 20 list because he is playing using quality players like Xvavi and Iniesta. we can think of Christiano Ronaldo who has played for different clubs and atleast he has proven that he can play any where you put him. A good players always be. not only at club level but you have to prove it at home which is a total failure to MESSI. SO I THINK
    1. Pele
    2. Maradona
    3. Pusckus
    4. Franz Backensbur
    5. Johan Clyfft
    and Cristiano should be in that list of 20 in position of 18

  • Mulindwa Andrew

    I don’t see African man George Weah on this list i don’t know whether you forgot to include him because he was so influential in world’s football. Being a man from an African Continent and beats all whites to become the first ever African world player of the year in 1995, it was not a joke. and Ronaldhinho should be some where there because he is the most skillful and talented player i have ever heard. live alone Messi who plays because Xhavi AND Inieasta supports him.

  • shawn

    dude! ronaldo is supossed to be second and ronaldinho 3rd
    i don’t think any of the oldies have the tricks these guys have

  • Chava

    WHERE THE HELL IS HUGO SANCHEZ ???????????????????????

  • John Machin

    How can zidane be first after that headbut on materatzi? That was disgrace to the football world so he should not be called the best player of all time.

  • Adesugba Oluwaseun Sunday

    I need more football history, am a Nigeria guy, Liverpool is my 1st team seconded by Real Madrid.

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  • john

    nvm Zidane is not even that good

  • jordanc123

    bobby charlton should at least get a mention and bobby Moore and also gerd muller is quite a good player

  • cw

    Why isn’t Xavi on this list?

  • Raj

    Ronaldinho should have been on the top

  • Napoliii

    Lol Zidane number 1, Pelè number 2, MARADONA number 3?? WTF ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT!? MARADONA IS THE NUMBER ONE! D10S!

  • Roozbeh

    Zidan above, Maradona and Pele??? Bullshit!!

  • MrSyrett

    So Beckham is better than Gasgoigne? In which realm of reality? Btw – Pele = most over-Rated player that has ever lived. People sometimes don’t even think about the question, they just automatically think ‘Pele’.

  • Ray Cooke

    How a list like this can be built while omitting George Best I’ve no idea. Scandalous and misinformed.

  • Jack

    Very poor list. My top ten is:-

    1) Lionel Messi

    2) Pele

    3) Diego Maradona

    4) Johan Cruyff

    5) Alfredo Di Stefano

    6) Eusebio

    7) Ferenc Puskas

    8) Franz Beckenbauer

    9) George Best

    10) Zico

    • nathan darby

      i agree

  • Jason

    Wow this is a very bad list, George Best, Paul Gascoigne, Bobby Moore, Ryan Giggs, Michael Owen, Paul Scholes, Bobby Charlton, Kenny Dalglish i could go on. David Beckham as the only british player, and he is definitely not one of the top 20. Even missing other greats like Dennis Bergkamp, Roberto Baggio, Eusebio, Batistuta, Paolo Maldini, Romario, Rudi Voller i could go on there are so many great players throughout history that deserve a place in this list more than half the players. Recoba who was banned from football due to false passport documents and Lillian Thurham who was part of a French side carried by Zidane? This list has really needs to be rewritten by a football fan which i am happy do so.

    • Neif Young

      i agree

  • Ronn

    This is a big joke list.

    How can you include Alfredo di Stefano (as good as he was) when the best player in the same club was Ferenc Puskas!

  • QBrute

    Wonder how this list was decided. Never heard of George Best? Did you ever see Pele in his prime? Pele had more than Maradona or Zidane.

  • sw

    where’s Rooney?

  • Neif Young

    YOU MUST BE FRENCH. ZIDANE OVER DIEGO, I mean ZIDANE was Great But No DIEGO GREAT, PELE i don’t even know why people adore him, he was not even as talented as perceived.

  • Adi

    bullshit list. It has to be Maradona, Pele, Jusabio(mind the spelling) then the rest

  • Glenn boy

    Where is george best?? He should probably be number 1

  • Mark

    Thuram and Carlos – world class talents of their generation? Certainly. Top 20 of all time? No chance.

    Maldini would surely go ahead of both?

  • chosen one

    Cristiano should be on the list

  • cj dancer

    for me the best player was ronaldo .ronaldo was more good than all the players. he had a great speed beafore the injures had a big injures he canged from rhit foot to left foot and still scores. no one did this in football the best in offside traps the most dangerous player that a diffender has to diffend. maradona had a weekness he had no strength in bod balace ronaldo had that you have to hit ronaldo very hard to stop him but the problem is that he keep fhiting for the ball till he drops the diffenders in the floor. you cant talk about a pele .in that days tere was no style of football pele was a greatplayer but ronaldo still beats pele on world cups goals .wat ronaldo had is. power .accurcy speed.teamwork .a player ho can cange game in seconds i c a lot of players avery day. ronaldo was the best player in the world all does teams he canged he gets relly god whit any player in a team and still scores beautifull goals. i whish i c a great player ass he was. sometime you c him sometimes not but wen you c him you gona c a goal .my list is .romario. rivaldo. roberto baggio.eric cantona.cannavaro.cruyff. maradona.zico.pele.zidane.roberto carlos best.alan shirer.nakata.valdirama.dunga.stam. edgar davids.van der sar.peter schmiecles.van basten .guliz.taribo west.roy kean.beerhoof.klinzman.batistuta.campes.zoff.baresi.maldini.thuram.bebeto.boksic.thay all gived good football .to c .but the best is number 9 ronaldo nazario de lima alwas scored whit fiar play not whit a golden hand like maradona. ronaldo always has scored farly goals i whis that one day will c a player ho loves to play iven whit problems in his nee thank for reeding this massege to c a good player you have to c him not whit one team but whit a lot that will do a great player.messi playes only good couse tere is xavi . iniesta et his back but whit argentina he did noting a big noting .were there is no xavi no iniesta messi find it very difficuolt the best players in the world rhit now are xavi .injesta .couse thay showing that whitout messi spain is the best team in the world .love to football

  • dany

    good list but i think you should replace thuram with thierry henry who is arsenal and france top scorrer and david beckham with andreea pirlo or xavi hernandez

  • lol

    zidane the best? LOL

  • Sihaam

    Top player list without Herny is a BS.

  • Gabriel

    Forgot garrincha from brazil, best dribbler of all times and maybe messi, although he is still too young

  • joas

    Pele should be 1st not 2nd, Maradona should be 2nd, and Zidane 3rd….please fix it

  • chente162

    wtf maradona is the best ever u dumbass

  • fondzeyuf Elvis Berinyuy

    well the rankings are good but archaic and needs to be up dated because of the modernity of football.

  • Harvey


  • Tito

    Rivaldo???? Ronaldinho?????? George Best?????? Eric Cantona??????

  • Martin

    No Puskas? Moreno? Garrincha? Pedernera? Messi?
    Who did this list? Stevie Wonder???

  • Joe

    lol if i played with iniesta behid me ppl would say i was best player ever as well. c.ronaldo is better than messi. zidane is good.beckham should be left best should be no.1 imo. hes def my fav player of all time. if zidane hadnt got sent off in france v italy world cup final and france had 1 i would have been content to have georgy boy at no.2

  • Luis Crespo

    Are you guys kidding me? Ever heard of Eusébio? Not the best ever, but certainly better than Recoba or Beckham…

  • cj

    this list is atrocious. absolutely awful. your 20 favorite players and the 20 best players aren’t the same thing. i can only assume you know nothing about the game if you’re putting david beckham on an all time top 20 players list. get f**king real

  • Oscar

    Good list, covered a lot of good players…the order will always be disputed and there perhaps are some players that should be there instead, mainly:
    Cristiano Ronaldo
    George Best

    There are some borderline players as well that could squeeze into the top 20 as well: Henry, Gordon Banks and Cantona

    Overall a good attempt at probably one of the hardest lists to make in the whole world

  • Jim

    Why is PAULINO ALCANTARA is not on list. i hope they could make an accurate research about this, a forgotten great football player of all time.

  • Brendan Conn

    I’m American and I agree that we should call it soccer, it’s stupid for anyone to argue that it’s called soccer, even though we do in America, it is still football. Our football should be called handegg.

    • Brendan Conn

      Sorry I mean that I agree we should call it football.

  • AG

    Im not gonna go into detail with my superior football knowledge but this list is a god damn sad state of affairs,all im going to say is,beckham?,recoba? but no messi and best…….ok……….

  • fatsolexxx

    ian rush…one of lfc greatest scorers, he shld hv been there….& also gulllit,…becks out!

  • pritam bose

    ronaldinho, ronaldo are missing…

  • aaryan khorasani

    zidane deserves to the greatest of all times in football.

  • c jane

    wat ronasldo did no one can do so many transfers so many goal in each club in some months injerys back from an injery scores agen .hi is not scared from noting i was injered in the kaltric and hamstring at the same time i was skared to play football but ronaldo still keeps playing zidane stoped in a perffect time in his carer of football he stoped in the best time he is claver .viva fenomeno ronaldo nazario de lima you the most player whit guzzz .but there were someting that i never forget the final of 1998 that was not loyal .money talks .

  • c jane

    soccer is a nice name but there is no meening to it .football makes better.but americans try to do there own languges haha you languge is inglish so you have to stick on it americans .i will call american football….kicking the ball up to a stick .im goking . i wll call it bigboys

  • zicoZan

    Only Messi

  • Hugo

    What about Eusébio, from Portugal? Thuram??? Really???

  • Dnig

    LOL!! putting Raul higher than Di Stefano

  • Roger

    How is Zidane number one

  • Aqsa

    where the hell is ronaldinho!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Ahmad

      yea i know that’s what i’m asking too!





  • Nicee

  • Ritam

    Maldini/Nesta should be include here

  • michael

    Good lord, this list is horrible, Ronald Koeman? DAVID BECKHAM?!?!?! Roberto Carlos?!? Raul?!?! lol

    Let’s just ignore the fact that Zidane is above Maradonna and Pele, and that there are several players who did better than Zidane, Laudrup for one, were a way better playmaker, Platini were better than Zidane.

    But I guess that Americans know 4 players, Beckham, Pele Maradonna and Zidane.

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  • sam

    where is leonal messi ?



  • I.W.L.T.A.E.P!

    Cristiano Ronaldo is the best and the most perfect player so far!!

    • franco

      Only if you are 13 years old.

      C.Ronaldo is not even the best today, Messi is.

  • James

    Messi should be first, then Cristiano Ronaldo, and where the hell is Sir Tom Finney????

  • Larey

    Zindane was a fantastic player but he was definitely not in the same league as Maradona. I’m lucky enough to have seen Maradona play a number of times at big stadiums and to this day I have never seen anyone with his ability on the ball. He was a phenomenon and in my humble opinion the greatest soccer player of all time.

  • Even Zidane mention Ronaldo El-Fenomeno is the best player in this century and also his idol.

    Search youtube for this keyword “Zidane talks about Ronaldo”

    What other player says about El-Fenomeno Ronaldo?

    El-Fenomeno Ronaldo also an idol for several players..

  • Alec Kicks

    American Soccer = English football. It’s all the same game in the end. All around the globe. Players can call it whatever they want, it’s not played different. I’m American, and love to play the game and in a U-16 division. The game has brought together countries and people alike to watch/play this beautiful game that it is today. It saddens me to see all these kids/adults fighting over the DAMN internet. Grow up. everyone is entitled to their own opinion. But i have to admit, english soccer i better than american in most ways, but you never know. I have a feeling once the US wins a world cup, theres going to be a world war III, lol. Everyone, its a game, calm down. My favorite player is Roberto Carlos.Anyone else like him?

    • franco

      No, Roberto Carlos was a terribly overrated defender, I wouldn`t let him anywhere near my team, Paulo Maldini was about 5 levels above him as a left back.

      • Alec Kicks

        It’s my opinion. I like him. He’s pretty damn good in my book. You have your own opinion, and i have mine. I do think Messi is a little overrated but is pretty dang good also.

  • franco

    That is one of the worst lists I have ever seen in my life… I`ll give you a top 10 of players I`ve seen good footage of in a while (so no Distefano, Puskas etc.)

  • franco

    In no particular order…

    Van Basten

    That`s the 10 best I have ever seen.

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  • prajey and yatharth nagdeve

    messi!messi!messi!the world’s greatest player accourding to me he is the goooooooooooooooooooooood of recent football.he is greater than cristiano ronaldo,rooney,kaka,dogu(drogba) and all of,let’s cheer him.

  • Mmzeruae

    Here is what I think

    Number 1 player of all time…. Messi

    Ditance second…. The rest

    • Messi can’t score live game goal against AC Milan. Just only spot kick goal from Milan own mistakes not Messi magic…

      Nesta always took the ball? away from that kid. Messi should be thankful, because Paolo Maldini is already retired.

      Is this player you called Best player of all time? What a joke….

      Messi can dribble average player, but he cannot dribble Legendary player like Paolo Maldini & Nesta. And for your info Nesta was 36 years old when that match happen.

      I respect that opinion man. Messi is a great player and so is C.Ronaldo (CR7). But Ronaldo Luis Nazário de Lima was playing (in terms of quality) at the peak of the best footballers around whether they were attackers, midfielders or defenders and was undeniably NO.1 ALWAYS!

      I don’t think the generation that grew up watching Ronaldo Luis Nazário de Lima (myself included) will ever see or experience the genius, hype and expectation this man brought to us…

      Watch Ronaldo vs Best Defenders:

  • kapil

    i think pele need to be on the rank 1 because he is inventer of banana kick and He is outstanding player with his ability ,skills and manner. in fact pele learn the football.All time top 1 football player

  • Christian

    This list is pretty horrible!!! Where is Marco VanBasten & Roberto Baggio???? If Raul is there than where is Ronaldinho???? Zidane 1st????? Please, people that knows anything about football knows that Maradona is the best of all times.
    Redo this list please.

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  • shariff the great

    hey bitches,
    zizou is undoubtedly the best.
    2. pele 3. maradona 4.beckenbaur 5.batistuta 6.socrates 7.raul 8.maldini 9.figo 10.xavi …
    no place for beckham please.

  • God myself

    beckham in the list…

    r u fuckin kidding me…???

    get the facts right…

    henry was a lot better than him… or xavi as well..

    u should have considered adding them in his place,,, fucking british..

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    Where is messi

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  • Ahmad

    umm.. where is ronaldinho.. the legend of all time.

  • james

    messi and c.ronaldo have to be in top 20 george best ahead of beckham, also henry?

  • kavan-kurdistan

    I think Maradona definitely is the best player ever!

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