Grab that cash with both hands and make a stash
New car, caviar, four-star daydream
Think I’ll buy me a football team
Football is the most popular sport on earth, with 3.5 Billion fans worldwide, being a football star is the perfect key for success, money and glamour – respected my billions.
Football players nowadays are probably more followed and loved than the pope or Santa Claus!
But being the best at football is not easy, competition is hard but if you do it, you fulfil many a young boy or girl’s childhood dream!
Through the years and thanks to technology, football players become better and better, here we are going to talk about the best of the best! Opinions may vary, but you can never deny that the soccer player listed below are Gods in the field.
Johan Cruyff (25 April 1947 – 24 March 2016)
Born in Amsterdam, five minutes away from Ajax’s stadium, his first football club.
As a player, he won the Ballon d’Or three times, in 1971, 1973, and 1974
“I was born shortly after the war, though, and was taught not to just accept anything.”
At 10 years old he joined the Ajax’s club where he made his first team debut on 15 November 1964 in the Eredivisie, against GVAV, scoring the only goal for Ajax in a 3–1 defeat, after that year the team finished in the lowest score they ever had, however, Cruyff changed things quickly, progressing year by year getting and in 1966 he scored a total of 25 goals in 23 games, and Ajax won the league championship, as well in 1967. His career continued successfully, with some injuries along the way but always on the rise.
He retired at 31 but after a bad investment decision he went back to play with the Los Angeles Aztects, Levante and back to Ajax’s
From 1985 to 2013 he developed as a manager for Ajaxs, Barcelona and Catanonia.
Besides being an athlete, he was a heavy smoker that lead him to different health problems, one of them lung cancer, that got spread and in 24 March 2016, in a clinic in Barcelona, Cruyff died at the age of 68.
Alfredo Di Stéfano Laulhé: (4 July 1926 – 7 July 2014)
Born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He began his career at Argentina’s River Plate aged 17, in 1943 and in 1949, he went to play for Millonarios of Bogotá in the Colombian league where He won six league titles during the first 12 years of his career in Argentina and Colombia.
His best years were when he played with Real Madrid, He was awarded the Ballon d’Or for the European Footballer of the Year in 1957 and 1959. He moved to Spain in 1964 and played with R. C. D. Español until retiring at the age of 40.
After retirement, he moved into coaching. He guided the Argentine clubs Boca Juniors and River Plate to league titles, He also managed Real Madrid between 1982 and 1984.
He died 7 July 2014 in Madrid at 88 after a heart attack, that he couldn’t recover from.
Edson Arantes do Nascimento aka Pelé: (23 October 1940 – )
Born in a humble family in Brazil, he learned to play with his father and in the street with friends, until he began playing for Santos at age 15 and the Brazil national football team at 16. He became the only player to win 3 FIFA World Cups – 1958, 1962, 1966 and 1970.
His first international match is where he scored his first goal as a Brasil’s player when they defeated Argentina 2–1 on 7 July 1957 at the Maracanã.
World Cup 1958, besides being the youngest player to ever play in the World Cup at the time, and its where he started to appear as the best player ever, scoring records like the hat-trick he scored in the semi-final against France.
It was in 1958 when Pelé began to wear a jersey with number 10.
In 1962 he went back to play for Brazil at the FIFA World Cup by then he was already rated the best player in the world.
World Cup 1966 Pele was the most famous footballer in the world and becoming the first player to score in three successive FIFA World Cups, it could be said that due injuries this was not the best performance he ever played but still his condition he scored the first goal against Bulgaria.
Diego Armando Maradona Franco (30 October 1960 – )
Born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Maradona started his career at the age of 10 playing at the youth team of Argentinos Juniors “Las Cebollitas”, qhere he shows his first signs of great ability to dominate the sport.
At just 15 years old he made a professional debut with Argentinos Juniors during a match against Talleres de Córdoba. During the time with this team he was 5 times in a row top scorer into the Argentina first division tournaments between 1978 and 1980.
His career escalated very quickly and at age 16 in 1977 he made his international debut with Argentina National Team during a match against Hungary where he scored his first international goal two years later, against Scotland at Hampden Park.
In 1979, he led the Argentina Under-20 team to win the World Cup played in Japan, he got the Golden Ball as best player of the tournament.
He then played with the Argentinian team Boca Juniors In 1981 but soon after mover to FC Barcelona and won Spanish League Cup and Copa del Rey before left the team to be relocated to SS Napoli from Italy in 1984
Maradona played in four FIFA World Cups:
1982 his first World Cup in Spain he played in all five matches without being substituted
1986 World Cup in Mexico where he led Argentina to victory over West Germany in the final as well as winning the Golden Ball for best player. Is the year where the legend of “The Hand of God” was born.
1990 Italy, this time an ankle injury affected his overall performance.
1994 World Cup in the United States, Maradona played in only two games scoring one goal against Greece, before being sent home after failing a drug test for ephedrine doping.
From all players in this list Maradona is the most controversial but yet with the biggest fan base.
Leonel Messi (24 June 1987 – )
Born in Rosario Argentina is the second prodigious child of the Argentinian football. Starting his career at the age of 13 when he moved to Spain after FC Barcelona arranged to pay for his medical treatments. Later at 17 he made his debut with this team, he has always play with the Spanish club in his professional career.
He owns a record five Ballon d’Or awards four of which he won sequentially.
He has been in 3 FIFA Club World Cup in 2005, 2009, 2011 and 2015.
Messi holds many records like the ones we mentioned aswell as like being the first player to score five goals in a Champions League, or being Barcelona’s all-time leading scorer.
Cristiano Ronaldo dos Santos Aveiro (5, February 1985 – )
Born in Sao Pedro Funchal, Madeira, Portugal, he started playing for the amateur team Andorinha between 1992 -1995 after that he practiced two years with the National at age 12. At age 14 he decided to dedicate his life to football, and after a heart operation he focus completely on building a career.
At age 16, Ronaldo was sponsored by Sporting’s youth team, where he later turns out to be the first player to play for the club’s under-16, under-17 and under-18 teams.
In 2003 he became Manchester United’s first-ever Portuguese player signed, as well as the most expensive teenager with a fee of of £12.24 million.
Then he broke another fee record when he moved to Real Madrid in 2009 with a transfer that cost £80 million.
He has 3 Ballon d’Or prices: 2008, 2016 and 2017.
That’s our top six, please let us know if you agree or think we’ve missed somebody.