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The Top 10 Juventus and Barcelona players ever


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By Football Italiano

Tuesday 21 November 2017

When Barcelona and Juventus were drawn together in group D on the 24th August, football fans were excited to see how the 2016/17 runners-up Juventus would do against the 2016/17 La Liga runners-up Barcelona, having both lost out on their respective trophies to Real Madrid.



The first match of the group stage saw Juventus travel to Barcelona with the Italians looking to stifle the attacking threat from Barcelona. However the Catalonian club managed to thrash the Turin club 3-0, with Lionel Messi finally scoring against Italian goalkeeping legend Gianluigi Buffon.


Since that first group match, both clubs have gone on to win a further 7 points from a possible 9. In the fourth matches, Barcelona could only manage a 0-0 draw away in Greece against Olympiacos while Sporting Lisbon managed to hold Juventus to a 1-1 draw on home turf.


Ahead of the fifth round of fixtures, Juventus will be looking to turn the tables on Barcelona in order to secure a place in the second round of the Champions League. With Gianluigi Buffon and Giorgio Chiellini only recently retiring from international football after Italy failed to beat Sweden in the World Cup playoffs a bet on Juventus coming back stronger with these players more focused than ever is certainly a possibility.


Both clubs have had some of the world’s greatest players in their squads and we have taken a look at some of the best for both Barcelona and Juventus. From those players who are still creating more legendary careers to those who have retired and even tried managing these two legendary clubs.


Gianluigi Buffon
We start this list with not just one of the greatest Juventus and Italian goalkeepers, but also considered to be one of the world’s best ever goalkeepers. Gianluigi Buffon started his career at Parma before moving to Juventus in the summer of 2001 for what was a record fee for a goalkeeper at the time.


Buffon has paid back his £32.5m transfer fee many times throughout his current 17 year spell at the club. He has won 10 Serie A titles, although 2 of those were revoked following the match fixing scandal. Despite the scandal sending Juventus down to Serie B, Buffon was one of the stars who opted to remain with the club and helped them to the Serie B title.


Back in the 2006 World Cup in Germany, he helped Italy to win the tournament in a penalty shootout victory over France. His performances for both club and country helped him secure a runner-up position for the 2006 Ballon d’Or, finishing behind fellow Italian and Juventus player Fabio Cannavaro. Following Italy’s failure to qualify for the 2018 World Cup in Russia, Buffon called time on his international career at the age of 39.


Zinedine Zidane


For most people Zinedine Zidane is considered to be one of the greatest football players ever, with the French midfielder able to dazzle spectators with his ability on the ball. He played for Juventus for 5 seasons in which he helped the club to 2 Serie A titles.


Midway during his stay at the Turin club he helped his country, France to win the 1998 FIFA World Cup, scoring twice in the final against Brazil. He was also rewarded for his sublime displays with the 1998 Ballon d’Or. In 2001 he was signed by Real Madrid for what was a record transfer fee and that record remained until 2009 when Real Madrid broke the record once again in order to bring in Portuguese star Cristiano Ronaldo from Manchester United. In his 5 year spell at the Old Lady, Zizou managed to win Serie A Foreign Footballer of the Year twice, in 1997 and 2001.


Alessandro Del Piero


Alessandro Del Piero is a true Italian legend and it was during his 19 seasons at Juventus that he really cemented his legendary status. He helped the club to 8 Serie A titles, although much like Buffon, 2 of those were revoked due to the match fixing scandal.


He made over 700 appearances for the club scoring 290 goals in his role as a supporting striker. His ability on the ball enabled him to not just score goals, but to also assist his team mates.


Del Piero suffered some severe injuries during his career which had prevented him from being as prolific in front of goal as he would have liked, although he was still able to provide the important assists for his team mates.


He was part of the 2006 Italian World Cup team to win the tournament against former team mate Zinedine Zidane and was also part of Juventus’ Champions League winning squad back in the 1995/96 season.


Roberto Baggio


Roberto Baggio was a controversial signing for Juventus back in 1990 having signed for a world record fee from fierce rivals Fiorentina. It was in his first match against Fiorentina where he managed to anger fans of new club Juventus as he refused to take a penalty, believing the Fiorentina goalkeeper knew him too well. His replacement, Luigi De Agostini missed the penalty and Juventus went on to lose the match. He further angered the fans by picking up a Fiorentina scarf when he was substituted which was a gesture despised by his new team’s fans but loved by his former team’s fans.


It was during Baggio’s second season at Juventus that the fans began to accept the player as one of their own, where he increased his importance in the squad and became more of a leader amongst the players. In his third season at the club, Baggio was made captain and remained with the club until the summer of 1995 when AC Milan acquired the attacker following the emergence of Alessandro Del Piero at Juventus. He won one Serie A, one UEFA Cup and one Coppa Italia in his 5 years at the club as well as winning the 1993 Ballon d’Or ahead of Dennis Bergkamp and Eric Cantona.


Giorgio Chiellini


Giorgio Chiellini is currently in his 13th season with the Bianconeri, having joined them back in 2005. The Italian defender remained with the club when they were relegated to Serie B after the club were punished for their part in the match fixing scandal. As star players such as Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Lilian Thuram and Fabio Cannavaro opted to leave Juventus following their relegation, Chiellini remained with the Old Lady and was able to become a key figure in their instant return to Serie A.


He has won 6 Serie A titles with the Old Lady and was named their player of the year in the 2008/09 season. He was named the Serie A Defender of the Year in 2008, 09 and 10 and along with team mate Buffon, Chiellini retired from the international scene after their 1-0 aggregate loss against Sweden, meaning the Italians will not play in a World Cup for the first time in 60 years.


Lionel Messi


Argentine attacker Lionel Messi is regarded by many as being one of the greatest players ever, often competing with Portugal and Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo for the title of the world’s best player each season. During his career he has managed to win the Ballon d’Or five times and has so far scored 523 goals in 600 appearances for Catalan giants Barcelona.


His ability to score and assist as part of the Barcelona team has seen him win 8 La Ligas, 4 Champions Leagues, 3 UEFA Super Cups and 3 FIFA Club World Cups. He is currently in his 14th season with Barcelona and will be hoping to add more trophies to his collection, with the club currently sitting at the top of both the league and their Champions League group.


When he was younger, Messi was often compared to Argentine Legend Diego Maradona, who played briefly for Barcelona. Messi has arguably gone on to become more successful than his compatriot, however Maradona does have a World Cup winners medal, having won the 1986 World Cup in Mexico.


Johan Cruyff


Johan Cruyff is one of the all-time greats of football, both on and off the field and he has won numerous awards as both player and manager. He revolutionised the game by developing the Tiki-Taka style of play during his time as a manager at Barcelona. This style is synonymous with Barcelona and is a major part of Cruyff’s legacy along with his trophy successes as both a player and a manager.


Cruyff joined Barcelona in 1973 after a hugely successful 9 year spell at Ajax. In 5 years as a player at Barcelona he won the La Liga title once and the Copa del Rey once, with the league title being the first for the club in 14 years. He won the Ballon d’Or 3 times in his career, with 2 of those being won while at Barcelona, while in the 1975 award, he finished third behind Franz Beckenbauer and Oleg Blokhin. As a manager he won a total of 11 trophies in 8 years at Barcelona, 4 of which were league titles and one being the Champions League.


Hristo Stoichkov


The Bulgarian striker Hristo Stoichkov joined the Catalan club back in 1990 from Bulgarian club CSKA Sofia and went on to win 5 La Liga trophies in 7 seasons at the club. Widely regarded as the best ever Bulgarian football player Stoichkov was part of the Bulgaria team which finished in fourth place at the 1994 World Cup.


As for individual honours the Bulgarian attacker won the Ballon d’Or back in 1994 and also won the Bulgarian Footballer of the Year five times. Also among his trophy haul are two European Super Cups and a UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup.


After retiring as a player Stoichkov became an attacking coach at Barcelona for the 2003/04 season before being hired as the Bulgarian national team manager in 2004. Unlike Barcelona legend Johan Cruyff, Stoichkov has yet to prove to be a successful and revolutionary manager with several Bulgarian players refusing to play for the national side while Stoichkov was in charge.


Carles Puyol


When the best ever Spanish defenders are discussed, the likes of Ivan Helguera and Fernando Hierro are names to be mentioned. Another name mentioned is likely to be Carles Puyol, who had a hugely successful career at Barcelona. In 19 years at the club he helped the club win 6 La Ligas, 3 champions Leagues, 2 UEFA Super Cups and 2 FIFA Club World Cups.


9 years into his career at Barcelona, Puyol was named as captain of the Catalan giants following Luis Enrique’s retirement at the end of the 2003/04 season. Not only has Puyol been a key player in the Barcelona defence, but he has also been a key player in the Spanish national team, as he scored the winner in the 2010 World Cup semi-final match against Germany before playing all 120 minutes against the Netherlands in the final.


Pep Guardiola


Johan Cruyff’s legacy at Barcelona was demonstrated in the form of Pep Guardiola, who was part of Cruyff’s dream team and was full of admiration for the style of play that Cruyff wanted his team to play. In 11 seasons at Barcelona, Guardiola was part of 6 La Liga winning teams and a European Cup. For the Spanish national team he won an Olympic Gold Medal in 1992 and he picked up a total of 47 caps for his country.


Following the midfielder’s retirement in 2006, Guardiola moved into coaching and management and has looked to implement the style of Cruyff into his teams. In 2008 Guardiola became manager of Barcelona and he 3 league titles, 2 Copa del Reys and 2 Champions Leagues among others. After his successful spell managing Barcelona he has had another successful managerial time at Bayern Munich and is currently in charge of Premier League club Manchester City.



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