Friday, October 19, 2012


                            Maradona lift world cup trophy in Mexico '86

Its a long and maybe a never ending debate of WHO IS THE BEST FOOTBALL PLAYER of all time?

Seriously, since last week I've been watching tapes of Zidane,Pele,CR7,Ronaldo de Lima(who I consider d greatest striker of all times), Messi and Maradona; especially the clips of Messi and Maradona and I came to a shocking revelation that the most skillful footballer of all time is Maradona and for everything messi has done it looks like a spice of cake as compared to maradona and even more shocking was that his goal against England at d 86'world cup, adjudged as d best world cup goal ever, was one of his easiest goals. 

Maradona is eccentric in every aspect a small man with a big heart no wonder he single handedly won d world cup for Argentina and d Italian league for Napoli. 

                   Maradona dazzles against England in Mexico '86 World cup semis

In Barcelona he was a monster footballer not only with his footballing artistry but also physical combat whenever he feels a sense of disrespect from other teams that's how fearless he can be not minding his height or size. 

Pele on the other hand was very intelligent perhaps the most intelligent footballer ever along side Zidane. Never the fastest of footballers but his movements were awesome and his positional play are next to none.No wonder he scored over 1000 goals. 

                                      Pele celebrating in Mexico '70 World cup

Talking about goals,  Ronaldo de Lima scored all sorts of goals and was very comfortable with the ball. Defenders fear him and coaches wished he played in their team no wonder he is the world cup top scorer of all times. 
                                Ronaldo De Lima, the phenomenon

Cristano Ronaldo is a human machine amazingly, strong for a fine boy who could easily pass as a professional model along with David Beckham but he sure has talent and packs perhaps the heaviest shot in history maybe along side Roberto Carlos the Brazilian legend. 

                                    Cristano Ronaldo for Real Madrid

For today's generation of football fans, Cristano Ronaldo and Messi are the best footballers they've ever seen but if any will be rated amongst the greatest of all times, I am sure the name Lionel Messi will be chorused. 

Messi like Ronaldo has broken a lot of record and at 25years his Barcelona's all time leading scorer and has scored above 40goals in two consecutive seasons. In fact, in the 2011/12 season, he actually scored more goals than Chelsea football club.  Yeah! that's how hugely talented he is. 

                                    Lionel Messi in Argentina jersey

Finally,Zidane, Algerian born,who represented France and even though Juventus gave him the big break through in football, he is seen as a Real Madrid Legend. 

Yes! that's what his life seems to be about or how else can you explain that a head-butt on an Italian player cost him the World player of the year award and his son has decided to play for Spain instead of his adopted country France. 
                    Zindane's Champions League stunner against Bayern Leverkusen

Twisted you would say but guys check this out!  His footballing talent is awesome and he was voted the best player in the last 50years some years back. A midfielder with great football control and a unique leg over which makes you wonder how good Berbatov and Ronaldinho is with ball control and step-overs respectively. 

Personally I so love Zidane because I play also as a midfielder whenever I have the chance to play football but no where near his calmness and intelligence. I looked at the tapes and wondered if a Nigerian maybe an African could rank amongst these guys someday.

My heart beats and I can't help but mention that Samuel Eto'o, George Weah, Abedi Pele and Samuel Okaraji were great talents with Weah being the only world footballer of the year in the mix. 

                           George Weah's, the only African world player yet
This shows but one thing. African players can get there with great consistency and hardwork no short cuts. 

So guys for you who is the greatest footballer of all times? Leave your comment and lets talk.   

Football without beef! 

Chijioke 'Smiles' Ezeali is a Television football pundit and a creative sport writer. He is also CEO of Soccer Gist International.

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