Football is one of the most-watched sports in the world, and footballers are some of the most famous celebrities in the world. With the emergence of social media such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, it’s now easy for football fans to stalk their favourite football player. When you talk about popular football players in the present era, almost everyone knows Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi. However, there are more.
Starting from the social media aspect, fans have seen several colourful posts from some of their biggest footballers. For instance, posts from Cristiano Ronaldo, the now infamous ‘se Queda’ post from Pique about Neymar’s exit, the list is long and below are the details. So many footballers are even more popular than a whole country or a president, thanks to social media.
Most famous player in football
Below is a list of the most popular football players in the world on social media as of early 2023;
|Cristiano Ronaldo||796 million|
|Lionel Messi||526 million|
|Neymar JR||379.1 million|
|David Beckham||134.6 million|
|Sergio Ramos||125.5 million|
|Karim Benzema||125.5 million|
|James Rodriguez||110.7 million|
|Zlatan Ibrahimovic||110.3 million|
The most popular football players of all time
If you ask any die-hard soccer fan about the most popular football player in the world, they will definitely mention some of the players in the list below;
Edson Arantes do Nascimento is popularly regarded as the greatest player of all time by many football lovers. He was the highest-paid football player during his active years, according to IFFHAS, and he was the most successful footballer then, with up to 1281 goals.
Diego Armando Maradona Franco is another football player regarded as the greatest footballer of all time; he is a retired Argentine superstar that won the world cup for the South American giants in 1968. Diego Maradona was fast, physically fit and could take on any player irrespective of height; he was joint FIFA Player of the 20th Century with Pelé.
Diego Maradona is an advanced playmaker, just like Lionel Messi, he plays behind the striker in his classic number 10 position. Diego Maradona is a world cup champion, and his ‘hand of god’ goal against England in the tournament’s quarter-final made him one of the most famous football players in the world.
Diego Maradona is the first football player in history to break the transfer record twice, Barcelona signed him for £5 million (the most expensive transfer then), and Napoli signed him from the Spanish giants for a record £6.9 million which was another transfer record then. Maradona played for seven clubs throughout his career, scoring 259 goals.
The Argentine superstar aslo managed clubs, including the senior national team of Argentina. After his controversial ‘hand of god’ goal against England, Maradona said, “If I could apologise and go back and change history, I would do. But the goal is still a goal, Argentina became world champions, and I was the best player in the world.”
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Lionel Andrés “Leo” Messi Cuccittini is a world cup winner, a UEFA champions league winner and a Barcelona legend. Lionel Messi is an attacker and has played as a number 10, 11 and Force 9. He got to Spain at the age of 13 and gave Catalunya everything whenever he us on the football pitch.
Lionel Messi is regarded as one of the greatest football players of the past and present decades; he is an integral part of all the exploits of Pep Guardiola Guardiola at Barcelona. Lionel Messi is Barcelona’s highest goal scorer in history, with over 524 goals and the highest goal scorer in the history of La Liga, with more than 300 goals.
Lionel Messi has over 100 goals in the Champions League UEFA champions league, and he has won the tournament four times. Lionel Messi has the most assist in football history with more 320, and is the best dribbler in the present era. Lionel Messi has won seven Balon D’or (most in history), has five golden boots and more than 100 goals for his national team, Argentina. Messi has won the Golden ball in two world cup tournaments; he captained Argentina to the 2022 world cup glory in Qatar; can you now understand why he is among the most popular football players in the world?
Famously called ‘Mr Champions League’ because of his exploit in the UEFA champions league, especially when he was with Real Madrid; he is without any doubt one of the greatest footballers of all time. One of the most interesting arguments among football lovers is deciding who is the best between Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, and the truth is that both of them have done more than enough for the beautiful game.
Cristiano Ronaldo is a Portuguese footballer, a legend at Real Madrid and Manchester United and one of the greatest players in the world. Cristiano Ronaldo has won a league title at Real Madrid, Manchester United, and Juventus becoming the only player to win a league title in Spain, Italy and English Premier League.
Cristiano Ronaldo has won four golden balls, Five Balon d’Or and several individual awards. He has won the UEFA champions league five times while holding the record of the highest goal scorer in the competition with more than 100 goals; he has the most goals in the FIFA club world cup and is the highest goal scorer in men’s football.
The record for the most goals scored in a champions league season (17) belongs to Cristiano Ronaldo, who scored those goals while playing for Real Madrid. Cristiano Ronaldo is a prolific goal scorer with more than 700 career goals, he has the most goals for his national team, with more than 100, and he has scored in every competition he has participated including the UEFA super cup and European cup.
Apart from the on-field exploit, Cristiano Ronaldo is popular among fashion brands. He owns a fashion brand himself and has a lifetime deal with Nike as their Brand Ambassador. Cristiano Ronaldo is an undisputed king of football.
Zidane is a legend in the History of France national team. However, one of the incidents that made him popular was when he head boot Materazzi in the 2006 world cup. Zidane is a Real Madrid legend as a player and as a coach, and he is widely regarded as one of the greatest attacking midfielders of all time.
Zidane is popular for his vision, elegance, speed and accuracy, he won the champions league with Real Madrid, two Italian Seria A with Juventus, and he won the UEFA Super cup with both teams. He also broke the transfer record when he moved to Real Madrid for a record €77.5 million, making him one of the most popular figures in the football world and an undisputed king of the beautiful game. Zidane was also famous for his exploits in the European cup tournaments.
Other famous football players of all time for top clubs
In case you think the list has ended, it has not, and you need to keep reading to enjoy more;
Jose Mourinho once said he knows only one Ronaldo, and that’s the one from Brazil. The Brazilian retired professional footballer was one of the greatest talents in his era for the Brazil national team and all the football clubs he has represented. Many greats and talented footballers have represented Inter Milan, but Ronaldo was miles ahead of everybody.
He was the greatest striker of his era, and he proved that in Barcelona and Italy; he is the youngest player to win a Balon d’Or and is the best player in the world at his peak. Delima flourished for the Brazil national team, especially in the 2002 world cup, but his career took a hit due to injuries. He represented Brazil in several world cups too, including the 2002 edition.
What do you remember when you saw that name? Skills!! Ronaldinho is one of the most talented and skilful players in football history; he was tall, fast and confident whenever he was on the pitch. Gaucho was part of the Golden generation in the Brazil national team. He was part of those players that revived Barcelona and made exploits with PSG in League 1.
Roaldinho won the champions league with Barcelona and the world cup with Brazil; he participated in two world cups and won several trophies for his national team, including the Olympics. He is one of the greatest footballers you can’t hate.
Many talented footballers have played for Tottenham Hotspur, but none can make the impact Glenn made on the team. Hoodie was a two-footed superstar, scoring 110 goals for Tottenham Hotspur and helping the premier league side win the FA Cup and a UEFA cup. One of the incidents that made him famous was his appearance in the Top of the Pops performing ‘Diamond Lights’ with Chris Waddle.
Shearer is Newcastle’s greatest player and one of the greatest football players in the history of the Premier League. Alan scored 206 goals for the Premier League side before he retired. He retired as a coach in the team during the 2008 season. Shearer is a premier league player that made history with his goal-scoring ability.
Beckham is another Manchester United legend that made exploits during the Sir Alex Ferguson era. Due to his abilities on the field and off-field fashion activities, David is among the most famous footballers that have played at Manchester United. Beckham got to Manchester United at the age of fourteen and made it to the first team in 1995, winning six premier league titles, two FA Cups and a treble in 1999.
Many great players have played for Liverpool in the Premier League, and Daglish is one of them. He won six league titles with the Reds, two FA Cups, three European cups and a UEFA Super cup in his 13 years with the club. He is one of the most popular footballers of his era.
The French man scored 228 goals for the Gunners, winning two premier league titles, and was part of the Invincible squad. Henry was one of those controversial football players that made statements in every game, especially in London Derbies.
Henry won three FA Cups and had a world cup with his national team as France won the 1998 world cup. Thierry is on Arsenal’s top 50 football player list and the highest goal scorer in the club’s history.
Most Chelsea fans regard John Terry and Frank Lampard as the greatest football players in the club’s history; however, in the list of the greats at Chelsea, Ron Harris will be at the top. Harris is one of the finest defenders that have played at Chelsea; his accurate tackles and interceptions made him popular among defenders.
He played up to 795 matches at Chelsea; he won the league cup in 1965, leading the team to four major finals, including the club’s first European silverware in 1971.
Alfredo Di Stefano
Most young Real Madrid fans may consider Cristiano Ronaldo the greatest football player for the Los Blancos; however, Di Stefano was the star of his generation. Real Madrid describes him on their website as “The best player in the history of Real Madrid,” and he played in virtually every position during his active playing days.
He won the Ballon d’Or and is the only football player to win the Super Ballon D’or due to his very important contribution to the beautiful game. Di Stefano was very popular among the greats and will remain that throughout history.
Popularity in football has to do with a lot of things, such as performance, football clubs and leagues. However, social media has contributed to the fame of many footballers and here is a list of the most popular football stars in the world.