10 Best One-Club Soccer Players Ever
These days it can be hard to be loyal as money motivates everyone. Old values are lost, forgoten and burried. Once a noble game, soccer has started to be less relevant and the money has begun to ruin the core of the game. Now players don't play because the want to, they play because it will bring them money, and they will play for anyone who gives them more money. But everything is not lost, there are still some players that play for the love of the game, and that is who we celebrate today. These are the players who rejected the money to stay and finish what they started with a team they loved.
10. Carles Puyol - Barcelona
As a Barcelona player and a longtime captain, Puyol appeared in almost 600 official games for Barcelona. He won 21 major titles, notably six La Liga and three UEFA Champions League championships. A Spanish international on 100 occasions, Puyol was part of the squad that won the Euro 2008 and the 2010 World Cup tournaments. In the latter competition's semifinal, he scored the only goal of the match against Germany.
9. Tony Adams – Arsenal
Arsenal players in a club's newer history aren't considered loyal, but it wasn't always like that. Tony Adams is proof. Adams spent his entire playing career of 22 years as a defender at Arsenal. He is considered one of the greatest Arsenal players of all time by the club's own fans and was also included in the Football League 100 Legends. With Arsenal, he won four top flight division titles, three FA Cups, two Football League Cups, a UEFA Cup Winners' Cup, and three FA Community Shields. A statue honoring Adams was unveiled at Emirates stadium on 9 December 2011, along with statues of Thierry Henry and Herbert Chapman. After his retirement he went into management, coaching several clubs.
8. Gary Neville – Manchester United
At the time of his retirement in 2011, Neville was United's second longest serving player in the squad, behind his long-time team-mate Ryan Giggs. He made his international debut in 1995 and was first-choice right-back for club and country for more than ten years. He was also Manchester United's captain for more than five years. After his retirement he worked as a sports commentator and currently as a coach for England's national team.
7. Iker Casillas – Real Madrid
Iker Casillas is a Spanish football goalkeeper who plays for and captains both Real Madrid and the Spanish national team. In 2008 he was the captain of the Spanish team that ended up winning their first European Championship in 44 years, and the Spanish team that went on to win Spain's first World Cup (a tournament in which he won the Golden Glove also known as the Yashin Award) and the 2012 European Championship. He is considered one of the greatest goalkeepers in the history of the sport, becoming Real Madrid's first choice when he was 18 years old. During his long career he managed to hold many records in Spain and international. There was a lot of rumors that he would leave Real Madrid, but he declined it all and said he wants to be a madridista for life. Let's hope he will stay like that.
6. Xavi – Barcelona
Xavi came through La Masia, the Barcelona youth academy, at the age of 11. He made his first-team debut against RCD Mallorca on 18 August 1998. Since then he has played 700 matches, scored 82 goals and made more than 180 assists for over 50 players. Xavi is the first player in FC Barcelona's history to play 150 international matches. The embodiment of tiki-taka style of play, Xavi is considered to be one of the greatest central midfielders of all time and among the best playmakers of his generation. He is one of those silent guys, that are not in the public so often, but he does his job. In the shadow of Messi, Xavi is the one who pulled all the strings and he is the engine who pulls his club forward. He has won every important trophy in his career and curently holds the record for being the spanish player with most trophys won .
5. Steven Gerrard – Liverpool
Considered one of the finest and greatest football players of his generation, Stevie G played 483 games for Liverpool, scoring on 113 occasions. Gerrard has spent his entire career at Anfield, making his debut in 1998, and cementing his place in the first team in 2000, and succeeding Sami Hyypiä as team captain in 2003. His honors include two FA Cups, three League Cups, one UEFA Champions League, one UEFA Cup, and two UEFA Super Cups. He is also England's captain since 2012. a post he holds till today. Although he is a great player, he never managed to win a trophy with England, and also he never did win with the English Premier League. He is now considered one of the greatest legends in Liverpool and English football.
4. Francesco Totti – Roma
Francesco Totti started playing for Roma in 1992. and played 568 games, scoring 237 goals. He is the number-one goal scorer and the most capped player in the club's history. He is considered to be one of the greatest players of his generation, as well as Roma's greatest player ever. He holds the record for having won 11 Oscar del calcio AIC, including five Italian Footballer of the Year awards, two Serie A Footballer of the Year awards, two Serie A goal of the year awards, one Serie A Goalscorer of the Year award, and one Serie A Young Footballer of the Year award. He also played with great success for Italy's national team winning FIFA World Cup in 2006 then retiring from national side after that. He was also considered the most popular football player in Europe thanks to his charisma, down to earth attitude and his loyalty. He is still playing at the top level even in his 38th year, and he won't stop anytime soon.
3. Ryan Giggs – Manchester United
Giggs started his junior career at Manchester City, before transfering to his bitter rival Manchester United. There he became a legend, proving how history can sometimes write itself. He started playing professional football in 1990. and collected 672 apps and scored 114 goals. During his time at United, he won 13 Premier League winner's medals, four FA Cup winner's medals, three League Cup winner's medals and two Champions League winner's medals. He has two runner-up medals from the Champions League, three FA Cup finals and two League Cup finals, as well as being part of the team five times when it finished second in the Premier League. Giggs captained the team on numerous occasions, particularly in the 2007–08 season when regular captain Gary Neville was ruled out with various injuries. After finishing his career he became a caretaker manager in Manchester United, before eventualy being appointed as assistant manager to Louis van Gaal.
2. Paolo Maldini - Milan
A true gentlmen, a man who won it all and a man who said goodbye. Maldini played for 25 seasons as either a central or left defender. Nicknamed Il Capitano ( the captain), he was Milan's and Italy's captain for large number of years. He played 647 games for Milan and scorred 29 goals in process. Maldini is widely regarded as one of the greatest defenders of all time. He played at a world class level for his entire career spanning two and a half decades, and won the Best Defender trophy at the UEFA Club Football Awards at the age of 39, as well as the Serie A Defender of the Year Award in 2004. Unfortunately he never did win a trophy with Italy altough he did participate in two finals. He once said he never did think about leaving Milan. In his honour the club retired the number 3, a number he wore trough his career. Upon retirement, Maldini turned down many offers for coaching job saying he needs some rest from football.
1. Rogerio Ceni – Sao Paolo
He may not be the best goalkeeper around, but he is admired by all of the soccer players of the world. For the entirety of his professional career, which has spanned more than two decades, he was associated with São Paulo FC, with which he has won 17 major titles, including three Brazilian Leagues and two Libertadores Cup (equivalent to the UEFA Champions League in Latin America). He has also scored more than 100 goals during his career, with all of them coming from free kicks and penalties. At 17 he started playing for Sao Paolo and never turned back. Over time, he played well, which put him on the map as a young star who could choose which club he wanted to play for. But Ceni said no, and with 41 years on his back he doesn't mean to stop right yet. He is a proud owner of many records and he played 16 times for Brazil.
The Players and their Teams