Most Influential Football Players In History

Football Legends That Changed The Industry

The world of football is a strange one. There are truly legendary players that will be spoken about forever, and rightly so. The greats like Ronaldo that, for lack of a better term, are icons of the sport itself. Though, it isn’t always the most popular players that are truly the most influential. There are some names less spoken about, but that have had a long lasting impact on the sporting industry.

These are some of the most influential football players in the world. Not the most popular.

Johan Cruyff

It is difficult to overstate how important Cruyff was, and still is, in the world of football. He stood as the lynchpin that held the Total Football movement together, demonstrating incredible tactical ability. So impressed is the world by his skills that he is still used as a training demonstration to this day. In short; he stands as an example of how football is optimally played.

Barcelona are known to use Cruyff as a benchmark for their tactical teachings, which pretty much says it all. Many say that Barcelona even owe a great deal of their success to the player.

Jean-Marc Bosman

Yes, most will talk about contributions on the field, but just as many contributions have occurred off the field. It is monumental how much is owed to Jean-Marc Bosman, who changed the way football works on a fundamental level. Prior to the mid-1990s players were at the mercy of the club they played for. A player was not permitted to negotiate other deals, regardless of where they were in their current contract. This made it difficult, and often very stressful for players, 

Jean-Marc Bosman changed all that in the court of law. After a lengthily process it was ruled that he may negotiate a new deal, even if his current contract has not officially expired. This shifted the power from the clubs to the players, as it is to this very day. The best players can now relax, sign up at Big Dollar Casino, and wait for the deals to come to them.

Diego Maradona

No list of best footballers is complete without Diego Maradona. The Argentine is a legend in both his home country and the world, often being referred to as the greatest footballer to have ever been on a field. Some say that his reputation is overblown, and that his image is bigger than his actual true skill. But that he more or less singlehandedly took his team to the World Cup, then singlehandedly won the tournament, it’s difficult to deny his global influence.

Whatever is or isn’t said about Maradona, he changed the game.

David Beckham

Sure, some would not put David Beckham on the same list as Maradona. But what Beckham demonstrated is that it is possible to be as successful at football as marketing, simultaneously. His image went well beyond the field, and although some may frown on him for it, Beckham changed the way many footballers approach their career.