Remember The Titans – I
When we turn the pages of history we find that there has never been an era when football was void of stars. There have been many great players in the history of football, but only few stand out even among the greats and shine brighter than the brightest. In this series we will remember these titans and re-live there times when they hypnotized football fans world over.
Football fans all over the world will come up with the name Pele, whenever you ask them to name the greatest footballer ever. It speaks volumes about the aura of the legend. With three World Cups to his name, and a total career tally of more than twelve hundred goals, there can be no doubting Pele’s brilliance on the football field. His deft touch, dribbling skills and tremendous goal scoring ability were all out of the world stuff. He helped his club Santos win the Copa Libertadores and the Intercontinental Cup twice.
Johan Cruyff (1964-1984)
Johan Cruyff was the star of the 1974 Dutch World Cup team and the Ajax team that won a hat-trick of European Cups in the early Seventies. Three times European footballer of the year, he was by far the most naturally gifted European player of his generation, and probably of all time. His supreme technical skills, speed and acceleration made Cruyff virtually impossible to defend against.
Diego Maradona (1976-1997)
Diego Maradona won the 1986 World Cup almost single-handedly and guided Napoli to it’s only two Serie A titles. By far the best player of his generation, Maradona’s main strength was his incredible technique, which allowed him to move the ball with pin-point accuracy. His name always contests with Pele for the title of the greatest footballer ever.
Alfredo di Stefano (1943-1966)
Two-time European Footballer of the Year, Alfredo Di Stéfano is believed by many to have been the best all-around player in history. Di Stéfano was a powerful forward blessed with stamina, tactical versatility, and above all vision. He led Real Madrid to five consecutive European Cup victories. Di Stéfano won caps for Argentina, Colombia, and Spain, but never graced a World Cup. He moved to Espanyol in 1964 and played there until hanging up his boots at the age of 40.
Ferenc Puskas (1944-1966)
Scoring 84 goals in 85 matches, Ferenc Puskás was the stand-out player of the marvelous Hungarian national team that notched up a four year unbeaten run in the early 1950s. He led his team to Olympic gold at the 1952 Helsinki games. Their most resounding victory came in 1953, when they became the first non-british team to defeat England at Wembley. Puskas fled Hungary in the wake of the Soviet invasion of 1956 and went on to play for Real Madrid. His contribution to Real Madrid winning numerous trophies is gigantic.