best athletes The Best Soccer Players of All Time  

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Originally by Ranker Community
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List Rules Any current or former professional soccer players from around the world are eligible.

Whether you call it soccer or football, this extensive list of the greatest soccer players of all time is ranked by fans worldwide. Who are the best soccer players ever? The goal is to determine the greatest footballers to ever play the game. The list establishes individual rankings of specific soccer players and helps answer the question, "Who is the best soccer player in the world?" This list includes some of the most famous soccer players in the world, but fame doesn't necessarily determine talent.

Though many more people are exposed to top soccer players during major international events like the Olympics or the World Cup (or even UEFA's European tournaments), there are numerous soccer/football leagues around the world made up of thousands of professional athletes. Any of these good soccer players are eligible for the list, even if they are mainly well known in certain regions or nations. In America, other than that nation's own Major League Soccer league, the English Premier League and its athletes are most likely to be popular, recognizable, and familiar - though the marriage of David Beckham to Posh Spice makes all the people he plays with more recognizable to American fans.

Vote up the world's best soccer players in the world who deserve to be in the top 10 in football history.

list ordered by

1
62,642 50,250
Pelé is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Pelé Forward, Midfielder

2
86,714 48,612
Lionel Messi is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
rebelr19 added Lionel Messi Forward

3
67,851 34,175
Cristiano Ronaldo is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Cristiano Ronaldo Forward, Midfielder

4
52,380 25,978
Ronaldinho is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Ronaldinho Forward, Midfielder

5
52,500 32,735
Diego Maradona is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Diego Maradona Forward, Midfielder

6
44,516 26,181
Ronaldo is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Ronaldo Forward

7
44,366 28,883
Zinedine Zidane is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
rebelr19 added Zinedine Zidane Midfielder

8
19,061 18,734
Kaká is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Kaká Midfielder

9
14,246 20,842
Paolo Maldini is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Paolo Maldini Defender

10
14,680 5,747
Neymar is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Neymar Forward

11
13,558 20,713
Marco van Basten is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time

12
7,178 10,476
Ruud Gullit is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Ruud Gullit Defender, Forward, Midfielder

13
17,538 8,987
Andrés Iniesta is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Andrés Iniesta Midfielder

14
28,062 18,780
Johan Cruijff is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Johan Cruyff Forward, Midfielder

The Best Current Soccer Players

15
14,426 8,471
Andrea Pirlo is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Andrea Pirlo Midfielder

16
16,809 7,889
Gianluigi Buffon is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Gianluigi Buffon Goalkeeper

17
10,794 10,122
Zico is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Zico Playmaker, Midfielder

18
15,239 12,134
George Best is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
George Best Midfielder

19
25,315 20,455
Franz Beckenbauer is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Franz Beckenbauer Defender, Sweeper

20
10,806 10,148
Alfredo de Stefanio is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time

21
3,544 4,623
George Weah is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
George Weah Forward

The Best Athletes of All Time

22
14,272 6,965
Zlatan Ibrahimović is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time

23
8,081 7,582
Ferenc Puskás is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Ferenc Puskás Forward, Inside forward

24
9,307 9,087
Garrincha is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Garrincha Right Wing, Midfielder

25
7,543 7,217
Eusébio is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Eusébio Forward

26
3,540 4,475
Andriy Shevchenko is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time

27
13,742 7,761
Xavi is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Xavi Midfielder

28
2,180 2,209
Luis Suárez Miramontes is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time

The Best Soccer Players of the '90s

29
3,516 5,812
Franco Baresi is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Franco Baresi Defender

30
2,098 4,278
Giuseppe Meazza is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Giuseppe Meazza Forward, Inside forward

31
2,675 3,713
Frank Rijkaard is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Frank Rijkaard Defender, Midfielder

32
6,463 5,339
Romário is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Romário Forward

33
1,937 3,384
Gianni Rivera is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Gianni Rivera Midfielder

34
10,656 6,394
Roberto Carlos is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Roberto Carlos Defender, Midfielder

35
4,091 2,875
Cafu is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Cafu Defender

The Creepiest Sports Mascots

36
1,616 1,937
Didi is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Didi Midfielder

37
2,767 3,156
Clarence Seedorf is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Clarence Seedorf Midfielder

38
4,305 2,266
Carles Puyol is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Carles Puyol Defender

39
1,250 2,671
Roberto Donadoni is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Roberto Donadoni Midfielder

40
12,457 7,912
David Beckham is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
David Beckham Midfielder

41
15,018 10,170
Thierry Henry is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Thierry Henry Forward, Midfielder

42
2,290 2,697
Roberto Rivelino is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Roberto Rivelino Midfielder

The Sexiest Female Soccer Players

43
5,370 3,584
Raúl is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Raúl Forward, Midfielder

44
5,247 2,950
Manuel Neuer is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Manuel Neuer Goalkeeper

45
2,236 1,200
Luka Modrić is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Luka Modrić Midfielder

46
3,032 1,578
Robert Lewandowski is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
FrancisLanceDavid added Robert Lewandowski Forward

47
3,187 1,801
Gareth Bale is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
StephenCrouch added Gareth Bale Forward, Midfielder

48
5,864 4,128
Ryan Giggs is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Ryan Giggs Forward, Midfielder

49
8,090 5,638
Gerd Müller is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Gerd Müller Forward

50
1,629 881
Toni Kroos is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Soccer Players of All Time
Arminius added Toni Kroos Midfielder