The British daily The Guardian published a list of what it believes to be the top 100 players in the history of World Cups. Up to 17 FC Barcelona players (past and present) made the list: Maradona, Ronaldo, Cruyff, Xavi, Romario, Ronaldinho, Rivaldo, Thuram, Lineker, Messi, Stoitxkov, Figo, Hagi, Puyol, Iniesta, De Boer and Popescu.
A total of three Barça players are among the top six, a number of players no other team can boast. They are Maradona (2nd), Ronaldo (4th) and Cruyff (6th), who along with Pelé (1st), Beckenbauer (3rd) and Zidane (5th) top the list. The rest of the Top 10 is completed with Matthäus (7th), Müller (8th), Garrincha (9th) and Platini (10th).
In fact, not only are Barça the only team to have three players in the Top 6, they are also the team that have the most players total in the Top 100 list with 17 players. Juventus (15) are second, and they are followed by Inter (14), Milan (13) and Madrid (11). In addition, none of Barça’s 17 players are among the last 24 ranked players.
The team with the most active players on the list is also FC Barcelona. Xavi, Ronaldinho, Messi, Puyol and Iniesta are five of the ten active footballers on the list. The rest are Cristiano Ronaldo (33), Buffon (44), Sneijder (84), Del Piero (86) and Lahm (95).