Pelé's list of the best 120 football (soccer) players alive

Reply Thu 4 Mar, 2004 02:54 pm
FIFA announced today the list of the best 120 players alive, according to Pelé.

Michael Ballack
Franz Beckenbauer
Paul Breitner
Oliver Kahn
Juergen Klinsmann
Sepp Maier
Lothar Matthaeus
Gerd Mueller
Karl Heinz Rummenigge
Uwe Seeler

Gabriel Batistuta
Hernán Crespo
Mario Kempes
Diego Maradona
Daniel Passarella
Javier Saviola
Omar Sivori
Alfredo Di Stefano
Juan Sebastián Verón
Javier Zanetti

Jan Ceulemans,
Franky Van der Elst
Jean-Marie Pfaff

Carlos Alberto
Roberto Carlos
Djalma Santos
Nilton Santos

Hristo Stoichkov

Roger Milla

Carlos Valderrama

South Korea
Hong Myung-bo

Davor Suker

Czech Republic
Josef Masopust
Pavel Nedved

Elías Figueroa
Iván Zamorano

Brian Laudrup
Michael Laudrup
Peter Schmeichel

Kenny Dalglish

Emilio Butragueño
Luis Enrique

Michelle Akers
Mia Hamm

Eric Cantona
Marcel Desailly
Didier Deschamps
Juste Fontaine
Thierry Henry
Raymond Kopa
Jean Pierre Papin
Robert Pires
Michel Platini
Lilian Thuram
Marius Tresor
David Trezeguet
Patrick Vieira
Zinedine Zidane

Abedi Pele

Marco van Basten
Denis Bergkamp
Johann Cruyff
Edgar Davids
Ruud Gullit
Willy van de Kerkhof
Rene van de Kerkhof
Patrick Kluivert
Johann Neeskens
Ruud van Nistelrooy
Rob Rensenbrink
Frank Rijkaard
Clarence Seedorf

Ferenc Puskas

Gordon Banks
David Beckham
Bobby Charlton
Kevin Keegan
Gary Lineker
Michael Owen
Alan Shearer

Roy Keane

Northern Ireland
George Best

Roberto Baggio
Franco Baresi
Giuseppe Bergomi
Giampiero Boniperti
Gianluca Buffon
Giancinto Facchetti
Paolo Maldini
Alessandro Del Piero
Alessandro Nesta
Gianni Rivera
Paolo Rossi
Francesco Totti
Christian Vieri
Dino Zoff

Hidetoshi Nakata

George Weah

Hugo Sánchez

Jay Jay Okocha

Julio César Romero

Teófilo Cubillas

Zbigniew Boniek

Manuel Rui Costa
Luis Figo

Gheorghe Hagi

Rinat Dassaev

El Hadji Diouf

Emre Belozoglu
Recber Rustu

Andriy Shevchenko

Enzo Francescoli

So far, the list has provoked havoc in Brazil. Because of some inclusions and several great players left out.

Gerson, incredibly left out, declared: "Before I didn't know who was the greatest, Garrincha or Pelé. Now I know".

Not a single member of the Uruguayan team that beat Brazil in the World Cup final of 1950 ("the Tragedy of Maracaná Stadium") was nominated.

IMO, this is quite a limited list, guided by political correctness.
What do you think?
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Type: Discussion • Score: 2 • Views: 13,722 • Replies: 19
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Craven de Kere
Reply Thu 4 Mar, 2004 05:35 pm
Pelé is a horrible judge of talent. I recall him once saying that Vampeta was the best player he'd seen. I notice that he's not on the list.

Then again, shortly after he said that Vampeta started a life-long slump.
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Reply Thu 4 Mar, 2004 05:41 pm
I think Alfredo Di Stefano, of Argentenia, is not worthy of consideration as an elite player.

Same goes for Karl Heinz Rummenigge, of Germany. What the hell has he ever done? Last time I saw him play he was falling down all the time.

And would someone please tell me why Zinedine Zidane is on the list. Good lord!
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Reply Fri 5 Mar, 2004 12:56 pm
Gustav, I think you are have confused DiStefano with some one else.

He is easily one of the world top 20-25 players in football's history (that is, dead or alive).

Di Stefano was born in Argentina, but had his best years (1953-64) with Spain's Real Madrid. He scored 418 goals in 510 games with Real Madrid. He won 8 championships with Real, and in 5 of them he was the team's top scorer.
He played 31 games with Spain and scored 23 goals on them.
He was classy and gutsy. Not an easy combination.

Got to agree about Rummenigge (can well put Andreas Brehme, instead).
The Brazilian's faut pas are inadmissible. Junior in, Gerson out? Incredible.
Jean Marie Pfaff???? He let the dumbest goals through in key games.
Jean Marie Papin? OMG! Hundreds of players are better than him.
The Senegal and Turkey picks are based only in one tournament, the recent World Cup.
The Japan and Korea picks are just to throw in some Asians.
The US picks are also politically motivated: 2 top females, and the only females on the list ( there are some German, Norwegian and Chinese woman players who would fit the list, if it was to be authentically for both genders).
Juan Sebastián "Bruja" Verón is also a terrible pick. Typical talented player who shows nothing when needed. Burruchaga or Valdano would have been better choices (and Valdano's career after his retirement makes him one of football's most relevant personalities).

I think he missed Poland's Gregorz Lato, Uruguay's Ladislao Mazurkiewicz, Paraguay's Gamarra (much better than "Romerito"), among others.

Now the list is FIFA's official one, with busts of the players in Laussane and everything.
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Reply Fri 5 Mar, 2004 01:01 pm
The English must be pissed, so few of 'em ...
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Reply Fri 5 Mar, 2004 01:07 pm
Yeah, and lots of Dutch.
In this, he was fair.
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Craven de Kere
Reply Fri 5 Mar, 2004 01:10 pm
I'd take a team of 11 Gamarras any day over any other team.
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Reply Fri 5 Mar, 2004 04:50 pm
Craven, I've told you a zillion times not to exagerate.
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Craven de Kere
Reply Fri 5 Mar, 2004 04:56 pm
But I'm serious! I think he was a better player than Pelé.
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Reply Fri 5 Mar, 2004 04:58 pm
Looking for my name.
Not finding it.
Dang, overlooked again!
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Reply Mon 15 Mar, 2004 12:50 pm
It is a very good list. But Chilavert (Paraguay) is missing.
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Reply Tue 20 Apr, 2004 10:31 am
Maradona, in critical condition

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) -- Diego Maradona was in critical condition Monday, breathing with the help of a respirator but showing signs of improvement after heart and blood pressure problems.

Maradona, who led Argentina to the 1986 World Cup title in Mexico, was put in intensive care Sunday after watching former team Boca Juniors play. It was the second time in recent years that the 43-year-old soccer great has been hospitalized.

Dr. Alfredo Cahe, Maradona's personal physician, said late Monday that Maradona had ``improved considerably.''

``We are a bit more relaxed now,'' he said, cautioning that Maradona was still being closely monitored.

The medical team treating Maradona said his ``progress has been satisfactory'' and his blood pressure was stabilizing. Those doctors said they expected to issue a new update on his condition on Tuesday.

The Suizo-Argentina private clinic said Maradona appeared to be suffering from the heart-related condition known as cardiomyopathy, additional blood pressure problems, and was being assisted with a breathing tube.

Cardiomyopathy is a disease in which the heart muscle becomes inflamed and doesn't function properly.

The clinic also said Maradona had a lung infection.

Cahe said the emergency hospitalization was not related to Maradona's past drug use. Maradona had been rehabilitating for cocaine abuse in Cuba.

Maradona, who looked pale and overweight in television footage on Sunday, was joined at the hospital by his father, his former wife and two daughters.

Dozens of Maradona fans, some carrying pictures of the soccer star, crowded outside the clinic in downtown Buenos Aires. One man held a sign that read: ``God Bless you, Maradona!''

``I'm staying here until I found out that he's OK,'' said Ruben Quiroz, 22. ``I'm really sad because he's the best that's ever played. I hope he comes out of this OK.''

On Monday, police officers cordoned off the entrance to the hospital and held back the crowd along a busy boulevard in downtown Buenos Aires, where fans put up signs reading ``Diego, today and forever!'' and posted pictures of him from his playing days to the clinic's walls.

He was suspended from the Italian league in 1991 for 15 months following a positive test for cocaine.

FIFA suspended him in 1994 for 15 months because of a positive test at the World Cup finals in the United States.

He eventually retired from professional soccer in 1997.

In January 2000, Maradona was hospitalized while vacationing in the Uruguayan resort city of Punta del Este. At that time, he was diagnosed with a severe heart condition and months later moved to Cuba for drug rehab.

He returned to Argentina more than a week ago, saying he had personal business.

Last month, Maradona broke with his longtime personal manager, accusing him of mismanaging his finances.

In his 20-year career, Maradona won Italian and Argentine league titles and led Argentina to the World Cup final in 1990.

In 2000, FIFA chose Maradona as the game's best ever, along with Pele.
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Reply Fri 23 Apr, 2004 03:09 am
Hm, Gustav, I respect your opinion, but I must say that I think you are bit out of this topic. I mean, it's okay if you dislike soccer/football or don't know anything about it, and, of course, despite that fact, you are absolutely entitled to talk about it if you want, but your comments are really strange. Alfredo di Stefano is one of the greatest players of all times and I think that fbaezer was actually modest by saying that he would be in Top 20-25 in every poll - I believe he would be Top 10 in every poll.
Also, Zinedine Zidane is one of the best players of all times - he is simply brilliant. And, today is UEFA's list of Top 10 players of all times announced - votes came from all Europe and Zidane is first with more then 1.000 votes more then second. Alfredo di Stefano is sixth by the way.

Here's a list:
1. Zinedine Zidane (123.582 votes)
2. Franz Beckenbauer (122.569)
3. Johan Cruyff (119.332)
4. Marco van Basten
5. Dino Zoff
6. Alfredo di Stefano
7. Eusebio
8. Lav Jasin (by the way, another Pele's joke - Rinat Dassaev, decent goalkeeper, is on his list, and Lav Jasin, one of the greatest ever is not)
9. Michel Platini
10. Paolo Maldini

Personally, problem with this list is that modern players get more votes then legends which is unfortunately unavoidable in such surveys/polls. Also, I am pretty amazed that Thierry Henry is not on the list, he is the best striker in last, well, at least 20 years.
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Craven de Kere
Reply Fri 23 Apr, 2004 09:21 am
Nah! Batistuta, Ronaldo, Romario... there are so many who are better than him.
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Reply Fri 23 Apr, 2004 10:27 am
Well I give you Ronaldo...but not for long time I am sure - and I give you that only because he achieved a bit more so far. Romario was great, but he never accomplished what he could've have...he had very good career, but not as it could be.
Batistuta - well, there I strongly disagree. Where he plays now shows it as well. Not that he is /or was/ not good player of course.
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Craven de Kere
Reply Fri 23 Apr, 2004 10:29 am
Romario coulda been a lot better, that is certain.

He was a lazy athlete who liked to cherry pick his goals.
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Steve 41oo
Reply Fri 23 Apr, 2004 11:01 am
1. Vladimir Illych Ulaynov
2. Kevin Keegan
3. Che Geuvara
4. Ron Atkinson
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Reply Fri 23 Apr, 2004 12:40 pm
About Lev Yashin, The Black Spider.

He was certainly the best goalikeeper in his times. Dassaev has nothing to do in comparison. Pelé had to kick in a Russian, for political correctness sake.

Yashin is dead. The list refers to players who are alive.

That's why, among others, we don't see the great Garrincha (Alegria do Povo) on it.
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Reply Fri 23 Apr, 2004 01:33 pm
yeah, I missed that part, although I must admit that I don't see a real point in making list of only those that are live today. I mean, they can make list of active players, and "all times" list, but this seems bit strange...

Being Croatian I would also add that Suker sucks. Greatest croatian player and I believe that he also deserves spot in this list is Zvonimir Boban. Suker was decent striker, but that's all - and I suppose quite many players are able to score that much goals if sticking close to goal bars all the time. Suker is faker.
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Reply Wed 2 Jun, 2004 01:33 pm
What's wrong w/ Pele.
Diouf played good during the 2002 World Cup but has not done anything else.
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