Football is arguably the most-watched sport in the world and for a good reason. Watching those football players run up and down the field is easy on the eyes and extremely entertaining. The level of skill and technical proficiency required in football is extremely tough, which is why when players pull off incredible feats in football matches, it becomes all the more entertaining.
There have been many greats in the footballing world since people started playing it at the international level. Look at all the football players we have had throughout footballing history, and you might have difficulty in determining who the best are. Such is the level of professional football.
When creating lists about the best footballers of all time, it is hard not to disappoint people. Everyone has their favorite players, so naturally, there will be times when opinions will differ. However, we have managed to compile a list of all-time great footballers based on their success and level of skill. Read further about who they are below.
1. Diego Maradona
It is hard to argue Diego Maradona’s position at the top of any list. He is an all-time footballing great and Argentinian hero. During the course of his career, Diego Maradona played many games and scored several goals, most of which were match-winning. He was also a key contributor when it came to assists.
Maradona’s fast pace, lightning dribbling, and off the ball genius were instrumental for winning his club and national teams several tournaments during his heyday.
Making it at the number two spot on this list is Brazilian legend Pele. After all, what list would be complete without him? Pele scored a record 1,282 goals during his career. They won him crucial matches, tournaments, and individual accolades. Pele’s technical dribbling, masterful passes, and long-range shooting were some of his biggest strengths.
He was also a leader on the field and off of it. Pele has the distinct accolade of winning the World Cup three times, an achievement that no other footballer has even come close to replicating. A lot of players of today look up to Pele and try to emulate his style. However, none have been able to achieve what he did during his career.
3. Johan Cryuff
The Dutch master Johan Cryuff was a big part of the success of his home country of the Netherlands and the various clubs he played for when he was active. The three-time Ballon d’Or winner is undoubtedly one of the best football players ever to grace a field. His effortless touches and graceful passing terrorized teams for over a decade and won him several trophies.
People often forget how great Zico was. The Brazilian scored more than 500 goals during his short career. His technical mastery was often compared to the likes of Pele. His ability to assist people for scoring goals was perhaps his best attribute despite the excellent goal scoring record. During his career, Zico won 4 leagues and the Copa Libertadores once.
5. Michel Platini
This attacking midfielder from France was a key reason behind the country’s success. He also won the European Cup and European Championship with his clubs, along with three league titles with Juventus. Platini was more of a goal creator than a goal scorer and a pretty good one at that. His vision and passing mastery make him one of the best footballers of all time.
Ranking the footballers mentioned above was very hard, as they all have unique qualities that give them the edge over one another. We wouldn’t be shocked if you ranked some of them lower or higher than others. For advice and tips from professional football players, click here.