The Best Of Midfielders In Football History

Published on: 20 August 2019

Meta: Let us all take a look at the top midfielders throughout the history of football. These guys have both the talents as well as the achievements to rest their own cases.

When we talk the greatest players throughout football’s whole history, the list can be both controversial as well as long. This case is especially applicable if we focus on the position that is known as a midfielder.

Choosing one or ten or even 100 players to make a list of greatest footballers is never an easy job. After all, this topic can be subjective with beliefs and opinions being bound to vary about who should be there.

Thus, to be more official, we chose to look at the talent as well as the achievements of the players. After doing so, we have finally managed to put together this list of the 10 greatest midfielders throughout history.


Xavi Hernandez

We would like to start things off with a more modern midfielder of world football, Xavi Hernandez. The star of Le Blaugrana may not have the same kind of legacy or long-lasting impact of the other entries. However, there is just no doubt that one day he will certainly become a legend of the game.

Few can match his talent in creating opportunities

After all, there are few midfielders who can be as crucial to the style and system of a team. Xavi is indeed the very vital cog holding the entire system of tiki-taka together. In addition to this, he has also shown his immense personal talent with more than 200 completed passes.


Zinedine Zidane

There is just no way that this name does not appear on the list. In his heyday, Zidane is simply the best footballer in the entire world with a close second being Ronaldo Nazario. He was indeed the most fundamental part of the France national team’s success through the 90s as well as 00s.

When Ronaldo and the Brazil team were considered as undefeatable, Zidane led France to complete domination over them. In that fateful final match of the World Cup 1998, France won 3-0 over Brazil with Zidane making two goals. With that win, he became the national hero for France overnight, bringing them their first-ever World Cup.



While his most recent accomplishments are mostly in the coaching role, the Brazilian has won almost all available titles. Usually playing in the attacking midfielder role, he was awarded the classic number 10.

Proving to be worthy of the legendary number, Zico became known as a diminutive playmaker. In the days that he played, there is none who can match his exceptional technique, speed, flair, and ball control. One of his trademarks was the no-look pass, which went on to become a classic move in modern football.

Just like the number 10’s previous wearer, Pele, aside from being an elite enabler, Zico is also an amazing goalscorer. Throughout his extended career in pro football, Zico made 476 goals over 698 games.



The very first step toward the modern football dominance that Barcelona made was managing to sign Ronaldinho. Among the most skilled to ever graze the field, Ronaldinho played a central part in Barcelona’s new dominating era.

This legendary Brazillian once again defined the way that football should be played and made people love the game again. Gifted with incredible creativity, dribbling, and technical skills, the man can always manage to squeeze a goal from nowhere.

With that kind of talent, it is only natural that he won the Player of the Year award two times. In addition, he also bagged a multitude of individual awards throughout his career.


Diego Maradona

There is just no way that Diego Maradona does not make the list. After all, this man is only behind Pele in importance to modern football. This Argentine legend also set not once, but twice the world record for the transfer fees.

Maradona cemented his already impressive legacy through leading, single-handedly, Argentina to their legendary campaign of the 1986 World Cup. Being the constant creative outlet of the whole team, this man was known for his vision, close control, and dribbling.

The goal that he made against England is still, after so many decades, considered the greatest goal of all times. There have been so many new stars rising since his days, but none have managed to touch his legends.


Johan Cruyff

Johan Cruyff created an entirely new philosophy in the way to play the game that we now call “total football”. That is why he is rightfully agreed to be among the most important people throughout the history of football. Redefining how this game should be played, Johan Cruyff was the first to understand that footballers can also be artists.

Throughout his stellar pro career, the man won Ballon d'Or a total of three times.


Andres Iniesta

This diminutive Spanish has been simply astonishing ever since the day he made his debut back in 2005. Although there are signs of him weakening with age, the man is still undeniably among the greatest of this generation.

An undeniable gem of the crown known as the midfield of Barca, Iniesta can always instinctively know his teammates’ locations. With that talent, he has been able to help the team to numerous titles, both domestic and international.

As for himself, Iniesta received the 2012 UEFA Best Player in Europe for his incredible play of that year. In addition, after a fruitful campaign in the 2012 Champion League, he was titled Best Player.



Football matches are more often than not run by midfielders, they are, after all, the engines of their whole teams. They are the link connecting the attack to defense, setting things up for the scorers and helping the defenders. The people that I have just listed on the list are all undeniably amazing midfield generals and playmakers. To say that they are the best players to ever grace this game is not at all an overstatement. They are era-defining players who made this game such a joy to watch. See full the football matches on