December 25, 2020
Since the first Guardian top 100 in 2012, 39 different players have made the top 10. Here is how the list has changed
From Touré to Haaland: how our top 100 male footballers list has evolved
Nine years ago, when we did our first 100 best male footballers in the world list, we had 11 judges on the panel. In 2020 we had 241, including Cesc Fàbregas and Juan Pablo Ángel.
But it is not only the number of judges that has changed, the whole footballing landscape has evolved. In 2012 Chelsea won the Champions League final against Bayern Munich but Barcelona were still considered the best team in the world. That was reflected in our top 10 with Lionel Messi, Xavi Hernández and Andrés Iniesta all included.
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