While Pele is the Brazilian known around the globe, many in his home country have more love for Garrincha.
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When Pele was injured, it was Garrincha who inspired Brazil to their second World Cup triumph in Thankfully, his brilliant career did taste glory at club level, having won three European Cups with Real Madrid, including in when he scored four in the famous defeat of Eintracht Frankfurt. It is not hard to see why. Born in Argentina, but having also turned out at international level for Colombia and Spain, Di Stefano played a key role in the history of European soccer, having famously come close to joining Barcelona before moving to arch rivals Real Madrid, and becoming an integral figure in the Spanish side winning the first five European Cups.
The scorer of an impressive five goals in World Cups, Beckenbauer finally lifted the trophy as captain in after suffering painful defeat in the final.
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Zinedine Zidane, France Scored two goals with his head to lead France to victory in the World Cup final, but it was with his feet that Zidane brilliantly cut teams to shreds. He was a maestro with the ball, weaving passes with perfect weight to his teammates.
A clutch performer, Zidane almost single-handedly inspired France to the World Cup final in It came four years after he scored one of the all-time great goals in a European Cup final to win the trophy with Real Madrid. Johan Cruyff, Netherlands The most recognizable member of the great Dutch team of the s that revolutionized the game with their Total Football, Cruyff was the total footballer.
While nominally a center-forward, the Amsterdam-native was ahead of his time in dropping deep to the befuddlement of his opponents. Sadly, fell agonizingly short of winning the World Cup, but won three straight European Cups with Ajax.
Diego Maradona, Argentina Maradona played in an era when defenders were allowed to get away with brutalizing their more skilled opponents, and yet he was still majestic. A hero for leading Italian club Napoli to their first and still only two Serie A titles, his greatest achievement came when he inspired Argentina to World Cup success in , scoring mesmeric goals in both the quarterfinals and semifinals. Lionel Messi, Argentina The key member of the greatest club team in history as Barcelona have dominated Europe, Messi can change a game in an instant with unfathomable close control while gliding forward at lightning speed.
The Argentinian has answered doubts about his ability to perform for his country and could now complete his legacy by leading them to World Cup glory. The all-time top scorer for Brazil, Pele fired in a total of 1, goals during a glittering career. Sports Soccer.
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Lionel Messi can elevate his legacy among the greatest players of all time even further if he can lead Argentina to victory in the World Cup final. Photo: Reuters The World Cup will be remembered as one of the most exciting and entertaining ever. This list includes the rank of the player, and the country they represented. A sportsman's true mark of excellence is the ability to step up under pressure and deliver when it matters the most consistently.
Hence the last 2 factors have been given slightly more importance. Now, without much ado, let us dive into the list and take a look at the 10 greatest football players of all time:.
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France might well consider their greatest ever player to be Zinedine Zidane, but before the current Real Madrid manager had weaved his magic, Les Blues had another improbably talented playmaker - Michel Platini. Credited with making France a global superpower in football, the diminutive playmaker enjoyed a long and fruitful career for both his club and country.
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Operating as a number 10 and an advanced playmaker, Platini often reserved his best for the biggest matches scoring a number of crucial goals in extremely important matches. Winner of the Ballon d'Or trophy 3 years in a row ,84,85 , the Frenchman reached the peak of his game when he guided the French national team to the European Championship title in Scoring an incredible 9 goals in just 5 games for Les Blues in the Euros, Platini playing in his home country captured the country's imagination with his stunning performances.
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He was so good that even Pele could not resist complimenting him:. Mario Kempes, Zico and Nuno Gomes were part of a strong voting panel as we compiled our list of the best male footballers on the planet. The best female footballers in the world Our judges have selected their top players from Click on an individual to read more about their year and find out our No 1.
World's top footballers The best footballers in the world