Over the years of its existence, the football game has had so many players with great talent and skill that is almost unforgettable to football supporters. There are certain players who standout completely in this game and continue to shine in our memories for their achievements. Here is a list of the top 10 greatest soccer players of all time:
1) Pele (1956-1977)
Pele is a retired Brazillian footballer, regarded by many as the greatest footballer of all times. In 1999 he was voted world player of the century by the International federation of football history and statistics. According to the IFFHS, Pelé is the most successful league goal scorer in the world, with 541 league goals. During his play days, Pele was the highest paid athlete in the world. He won three FIFA World Cups; 1958, 1962 and 1970, only player ever to do so, and ranks fifth in the history of the World Cup top goal scorers with 12 goals.
2) Lionel Messi
Messi is an Argentine footballer who plays forward for FC Barcelona and the Argentina national team. He serves as captain for his country’s national team. By the age of 21, Messi had received the Ballon d’OR and FIFA world player of the year nominations. In 2009 he won the Ballon and FIFA world player of the year awards. He followed it up with winning the 2010, 2011, and 2012 Ballon d’Or awards. He also won the 2010/2011 EUFA best player in Europe award. At the age of 24 Messi became Barcelona’s all-time top goal scorer in all official club competitions. At the age of 25 Messi became the youngest player to score 200 goals in the La Liga. With Barcelona, Messi has won; six La Ligas, two Copa de Rey, five Supercopesde Espana, three UEFA Super Cups and two club world cups.
3) Maradona (1976-1997)
Maradona is a retired Argentine footballer. He is regarded as the world’s greatest footballer of all time by many. He is the only player in football history to set the world record transfer fee twice, to Barcelona and Napoli. At club level, he is most famous for his career in Napoli where he won numerous accolades. In his international career, playing for Argentina he earned 91 caps and scored 34 goals. Maradona has played in four FIFA World Cups, including the 1986 World cup where he captained Argentina and led them to Germany in the final, and won the Gold Ball award as the tournament’s best player. He became the head coach of the Argentina team in November 2008.
4) Johan Cruyff (1964-1984)
Johan is a former Dutch footballer and recently managerial coach of Catalonia football team. He won the Ballon d’Or three times; in 1971, 1973 and 1974. He led the Netherlands national team to the final of the 1974 FIFA World Cup and received the Golden Ball as player of the tournament. He was chosen on the World team of the 20th century in 1998, the FIFA World Cup dream team in 2002, and in 2004 was named as one of the Top 125 living great footballers as part of FIFA’s 100th anniversary celebration.
5) Franz Beckenbauer (1964-1984)
Franz is German football coach and former footballer. He is regarded as the greatest German footballer of all times. Beckenbauer was a versatile player, who started out as a midfielder, but made his name as a defender. He is often credited as having invented the role of the modern sweeper. Twice selected European footballer of the year, Beckenbauer appeared 103 times for West Germany and played in three FIFA World Cups. He is one of only two men, along with Brazil’s Mario Zagallo, to have won the World Cup both as a player and as a coach. He is the only one to win it as captain and coach: he lifted the World Cup trophy as captain in 1974, and repeated the feat as a manager in 1990. He was chosen on the world team of the 20th century in 1998, the FIFA World Cup dream team in 2002, and in 2004 was named as one of the Top 125 greatest living footballers as part of FIFA’s 100th anniversary celebration
6) Michel Platini (1973-1987)
Michel is a former French footballer and manager. Regarded as one of the greatest footballers of all time, he came sixth in the FIFA player of the century vote, and was chosen as a member of the FIFA World Cup dream team. He won the Ballon d’Or three times, in 1983, 1984 and 1985. During his professional footballing career, Platini was a member of the French national team that won the 1984 European Champions, a tournament in which he was the top goal scorer and voted the best player. He also participated in the 1978, 1982 and 1986 World Cups, reaching the semi-finals in the latter two. Platini is part of the group of Midfielders players that formed the heart of the French team in the 1980s.
7) Alfredo Di Stefano (1943-1976)
Alfredo is a former Argentine-Spanish footballer and coach. He is most associated with Real Madrid and was instrumental in their domination of the European Champions cup during the 1950s, a period in which the club won the trophy in five consecutive seasons from 1956. He is currently the fifth highest scorer in the history of Spain’s top division, and Real Madrid’s second highest league goals corer of all time, with 216 goals in 282 league matches between 1953 and 1964. In November 2003, to celebrate UEFA’s Jubilee, he was selected as the Golden Player of Spain by the Royal Spanish Football Federation as their most outstanding player of the past 50 years. He was named by Pele as one of the top 125 greatest living footballers.
8) Ferenc Puskas (1944-1996)
Ferenc was a Hungarian footballer and manager. He scored 84 goals in 85 international matches for Hungary and 514 goals in 529 matches in the Hungarian and Spanish leagues. He became Olympic champion in 1952 and led his nation to the final of the 1954 World Cup where he was named the tournament’s best player. He won three European Cups (1959, 1960 and 1966), 10 national championships (5 Hungarian & 5 Spanish Primera Division) and 8 top individual scoring honors. He was top scorer in the Hungarian League on four occasions, and in 1948, he was the top goal scorer in Europe. While playing with Real Madrid, Puskás won four Pichichis and scored seven goals in two European Champions Cup finals. In 1995, he was recognized as the top scorer of the 20th century by the IFFHS.
9) Eusebio (1944-1978)
Eusebio was a Mozambican-born Portuguese football forward. During his professional career, he scored 733 goals in 745 matches. He helped Portugal reach third place at the 1966 World Cup, being the top goal scorer of the tournament with nine goals (including four in one match against North Korea) and received the Bronze Ball award. He won the Ballon d’Or award for European footballer of the year in 1965 and was runner-up in 1962 and 1966. He played for Benfica for 15 out of his 22 years as a footballer, thus being mainly associated with the Portuguese club, and is the team’s all-time top scorer with 638 goals scored in 614 official games. There, he won eleven Primeira Liga titles, five Tace de Portugal titles, a European Cup 1961/1962 and helped them reach three additional European Cup finals (1962, 1065 and 1968). He is the eighth highest goal scorer in the history of the European Cup and the second-highest, behind Alfredo Di Stefano, in the pre-Champions League era with 48 goals. He was the European Cup top scorer in 1964/1965, 1965/1966 and 1966/1967. He also won the Bola de Prata (Primeira Liga top scorer award) a record seven times. He was the first ever player to win theEuropean Golden Boot, in 1968, a feat he replicated in 1973.
10) George Best (1963-184)
George was a Northern Irish professional footballer who played as a winger for Manchester United and the Northern Ireland national team. In 1968 he won the European with United, and was named the European footballer of the year and FWA footballer of the year. He is described by the national team’s governing body, the Irish football association, as the “greatest player to ever pull on the green shirt of Northern Ireland”. Before he died, Best was voted 16th in the IFFHS World player of the century election in 1999 and was one of the inaugural 22 inductees into the English football hall of fame in 2002; in 2004 he was also voted 19th in the public UEFA Golden Jubilee Poll and former Brazilian footballer Pele, considered by many as the world’s greatest, admired Bes