They say loyalty in football is long-gone, an ideal that has passed-by thanks to the ever-growing influence of money of the game.
Of course, you can certainly understand that appraisal, too, with players more and more desperate to move sides in order to further their chances of winning trophies and leave a legacy of individual success, rather than representing one team.
The notion of a one club man, then, appears to becoming a rarer occurrence but that doesn’t mean we can’t look back at some of the greatest and appreciate just what they’ve done for their respective sides.
So, with that in mind, we’ve taken a look at the ones in the picture above and narrowed it down to a top three.
Here’s who we came up with, and it was incredibly hard…
3. Franco Baresi
A man whose career with AC Milan spanned two decades, Baresi was arguably one of the few defenders to really re-define the centre-half position. Deployed as a sweeper and a typical central defender, Baresi was part of one of the greatest periods for the Rossoneri in the late 80’s and early 90’s where he racked up 3 European Cups and 5 of the 6 Serie A titles he won. One of the greatest defenders ever, the 1982 World Cup winner really is a hero.
2. Ryan Giggs
What can you say about the Welsh winger apart from the fact that he is the very embodiment of Manchester United’s rise to dominance in English football. 13 league titles – more than pretty much every other club in the country – 2 Champions Leagues and 4 FA Cups, amongst much more, Giggs won it all. He adapted his game as he got older, too, and was still a class act late into his 30’s – summing up his dedication to his club and the sport.
1. Paolo Maldini
The Italian hero was at AC Milan for a quarter of a century, making his debut in 1984 and playing until 2009 for the Italian giants. During that time he became both a world-class left-back and centre-half as well as captaining his side to a plethora of titles. 7 league titles would ensue as well as a scarcely believable 5 European Cups – as many as the likes of Barcelona, Liverpool and Bayern Munich. The Italian was unbelievably good until the very end, and deserves to be our no.1 one club man.
What do you think? Let us know!