A look at some of the better players you may have forgotten
There are many many players who at some point were considered the best in their respective positions. Pele, Zidane, Beckenbauer – and these names will forever by synonymous with football. They are regularly brought up in conversations in the pub, or even from pundits on the television. And quite rightly so, the have gained such reputations for a reason.
But, then there are those who you just don’t hear of any more for whatever reasons. They used to light up the field, day in day out. When playing, they were untouchable, yet they are barely, if at all, brought up in any sort of conversation.
This is like one of those ‘Only ’90s kids will remember’ but for true football fans.
You just went “Oh yeah!” didn’t you? That’s going to happen a lot during this. Yes, the other French maestro, who often took a backseat in the headlines due to him playing alongside Zidane, but his class was unquestionable. He was vital to the French team that was so dominant in the late ’90s and early ’00s and he has both a World Cup and European Championship under his belt. He scored 28 times in 82 appearances for his country, and knocked in 196 goals at club level (almost 100 more than Zidane) not bad for a midfielder. He retired in 2006 after a short stint in the MLS, in which he won MVP in his only season there. Obviously.
Unless Niko Krancjar’s form for QPR takes a ridiculous upturn over the next few weeks, we can say that Mr. Suker is more than likely the greatest Croatian to ever play the game. There were those that came close, but there is a reason why he is the only Croatian on the FIFA 125 Greatest Footballers list. Mr. Suker (unfortunate name in English) was a natural goalscorer, and he done his job for some of the biggest clubs in the world. He scored goals for Real Madrid and Arsenal (as well as others) and of course he banged them in at international level, winning the Golden Shoe at France ’98 as he helped Croatia to a very, very respectable 3rd place finish. He is now President of the Croatian Football Federation. Not bad.
The title of Brazil’s greatest ever striker often comes down to a toss up between Pele and Fat Ronaldo, however, there is one man that often doesn’t receive the recognition that he deserves. Stuck somewhere between Pele’s goalscoring antics and Ronaldo’s love handles is the original little Brazilian, Romario. He boasts the title of being one of only 3 players ever to break the 1,000 goals mark, which should say enough by itself, but just in case it doesn’t his World Cup Winners medal and the fact that he played for Brazil up until the age of 39 should help. He doesn’t often come up in conversation about football these days, probably because he is now a politician in Brazil, and sits on the Brazilian State Senate. Also not bad.
Tawlon Manneh Oppon Ousman Weah. George Tawlon Manneh Oppon Ousman Weah. While we won’t remember his middle names, we certainly remember the other two and that they were synonymous with scoring goals. In 1995, George Weah won both the European Player of the Year (now known as the Ballon d’Or) and the FIFA World Player of the Year and is still the only African to ever win either. And if that isn’t enough, he was voted African Player of the Century in 1996, with the CAF deciding that the chances of a better player coming along in the next 4 years were slim to none. Weah is another to have gone into politics after his football career, and even had a run at President of Liberia in 2005. Unfortunately he lost, but he still sits on the Liberian State Senate, putting him up there with Romario as players turned senators.
The Maradona of the Carpathians as he was better known as. The Carpathians is a mountain range that runs through Romania. We think that this nickname doesn’t do him justice, as while he might’ve been the best player to come from the region, his class was still better than others who did not. Named Romania’s Golden Player by FIFA, essentialy the greatest ever Romanian player, Hagi lit up the world of football in a long career spanning 23 years. While you might not hear his name too often, he is still very much involved in football in his native Romania. In 2009 he founded the club Viitorul Constanta, where he is currently owner, chairman and manager. He truly is living the footballing dream.