All time XI's for national teams

Discussion in 'The Beautiful Game' started by Lasha the Idiotic, Jan 9, 2022.

  1. Lasha the Idiotic

    FC Barcelona
    Jul 19, 2021
    I know this is a pretty standard discussion that has appeared many times, but I'm gonna try to make all time XI's for national teams. I'll start off with 4.


    Goalkeeper: Gilmar
    Right Back: Djalma Santos
    Center Back: Carlos Alberto
    Center Back: Domingos da Guia
    Left Back: Nilton Santos
    Defensive Midfielder: Zito
    Central Midfielder/Playmaker: Didi
    Attacking Midfielder: Zico
    Right Winger: Garrincha
    Center Forward: Ronaldo
    Inside Left/Playmaking Forward: Pele

    Bench: Taffarel, Cafu, Pereira, Dunga, Falcao, Romario, Ademir


    Goalkeeper: Gianluigi Buffon
    Right Wing Back: Gianluca Zambrotta
    Sweeper: Franco Baresi
    Center Back: Alessandro Nesta
    Center Back: Paolo Maldini
    Left Wing Back: Giacinto Facchetti
    Defensive Midfielder: Romeo Benetti
    Central Midfielder: Andrea Pirlo
    Support Striker: Giuseppe Meazza
    Center Forward: Silvio Piola
    Center Forward: Luigi Riva

    Bench: Zoff, Scirea, Gentile, Cannavaro, Tardelli, Baggio, Schiavio


    Goalkeeper: Ubaldo Fillol
    Right Back: Javier Zanetti
    Center Back: Daniel Passarella
    Center Back: Jose Salomon
    Left Back: Silvio Marzolini
    Defensive Midfielder: Luis Monti
    Central Midfielder: Fernando Redondo
    Central Midfielder: Antonio Sastre
    Attacking Midfielder: Diego Maradona
    False 9: Lionel Messi
    False 9: Alfredo Di Stefano

    Bench: Carrizo, Olguin, Perfumo, Rossi, Moreno, Orsi, Kempes


    Goalkeeper: Gordon Banks
    Right Back: Jimmy Armfield
    Center Back: Bobby Moore
    Center Back: Billy Wright
    Left Back: Ashley Cole
    Right Winger: Stanley Matthews
    Central Midfielder: Steven Gerrard
    Central Midfielder: Ernest Needham
    Left Winger: Bobby Charlton
    Center Forward: Tommy Lawton
    Center Forward: Steve Bloomer

    Bench: Shilton, Crompton, Hapgood, Edwards, Finney, Buchan, GO Smith

    just to be clear, these 4 aren't the only ones I'll be covering
    PDG1978 repped this.
  2. PDG1978

    PDG1978 Member+

    Mar 8, 2009
    Nottingham Forest FC
    Nice work mate! These would be my best/current attempts for your first 4 nations, based on idea about peak versions but a little bit consistency too of course (I've used the same system as you twice - I had previously and most recently I think used the Brazil one, but have switched away from the England one and towards the Italy one today basically lol, while for sure I can see the idea behind the 'two false 9' Argentina formation you went with!)....

    Goalkeeper: Gilmar
    Right back: Cafu
    Centre back: Carlos Alberto
    Centre back: Domingos Da Guia
    Left back: Nilton Santos
    Defensive/anchor CM: Zito
    Playmaker CM: Didi
    Attacking midfielder: Zico
    Right forward: Garrincha
    Left forward (nominally): Pele
    Centre forward: Ronaldo

    Subs: Julio Cesar (GK), Aldair, Junior, Falcao, Socrates, Ronaldinho, Romario

    Goalkeeper: Gianluigi Buffon
    Sweeper: Gaetano Scirea
    Centre back: Alessandro Nesta
    Centre back: Franco Baresi
    Right wing back: Gianluca Zambrotta
    Left wing back: Paolo Maldini
    Centre midfielder: Giussepe Giannini
    Centre midfielder: Marco Verratti
    Inside right: Giussepe Meazza
    Inside left: Roberto Baggio
    Centre forward: Silvio Piola

    Subs: Dino Zoff, Fabio Cannavaro, Giacinto Facchetti, Andrea Pirlo, Roberto Donadoni, Francesco Totti, Paolo Rossi

    Goalkeeper: Ubaldo Fillol
    Right back: Javier Zanetti
    Centre back: Oscar Ruggeri
    Centre back: Daniel Passarella
    Left back: Silvio Marzolini
    Central midfielder: Osvaldo Ardiles
    Central midfielder: Fernando Redondo
    Right wing forward: Lionel Messi
    Supporting forward/AM: Alfredo Di Stefano
    Left wing forward (nominally): Diego Maradona
    Centre forward: Mario Kempes

    Subs: Amadeo Carizzo, Roberto Perfumo, Carlos Sosa, Americo Gallego, Jose Manuel Moreno, Claudio Caniggia, Gabriel Batistuta

    Goalkeeper: Gordon Banks
    Right back: Rob Jones
    Centre back: Des Walker
    Centre back: Bobby Moore
    Left back: Stuart Pearce
    Right CM/AM: Glenn Hoddle
    CM/DM: Duncan Edwards
    Left CM/AM: Bobby Charlton
    Right wing: Stanley Matthews
    Left wing: Tom Finney
    Striker: Gary Lineker

    Subs: Peter Shilton, Billy Wright, Bryan Robson, Paul Gascoigne, John Barnes, Jimmy Greaves, Alan Shearer

    Taffarel was kind of a favourite of mine for a while actually, but I'm feeling like Julio Cesar might be a more reliable and safer pair of hands. I felt like if they have 3 central defenders (although with a libero and another in Baresi who might surge forwards at times too) they don't need a DM, so Verratti can be a footballing partner for Giannini. Maybe the alternative formation for Italy (if thinking in terms of actual line-ups in theory) could be 4-3-2-1 though, with a trio of midfielders, and Verratti playing more like an outright anchor player albeit one that got the ball down and participated in build up. Donadoni could be as much the option to come in as the 3rd midfielder as Pirlo maybe though, since he could play as a CM verging on roaming winger, a little like he did at times in reality, but he'd also be an option for right wing back/midfielder I guess. From what I saw of Gallego in WC1978 in particular I felt he'd be worth a place, particularly with this formation I used for Argentina. The England subs bench does seem a bit stacked towards forwards over defenders but I'm thinking Edwards and Robson would be emergency options in defence, and I thought Greaves might be as much or more of an option with the formation becoming 4-4-2/4-2-4 (probably still with Bobby Charlton as one of the central midfielders though) as in the 4-3-3, and that Shearer might be as good as or a better partner for him than Lineker (but for sure Shearer could be used in a 4-3-3 or with a single playmaker AM behind I think too). If only Barnes's club form was guarenteed lol (although maybe at club level for Liverpool he had many more opportunities so to some extent any slightly wasteful play gets forgetten about while in the England team it stood out more if he didn't do much else due partly to lack of oppportunity - there's no doubt still though that he thrived more in the Liverpool team and/or hit bad form at bad times for International tournaments), he could be just as much an option in a 4-3-3 as Matthews, because Finney could play from the right of course (but Matthews despite not being much of a scorer, even back in the 1930s probably, was such a good provider that I think he'd still be first choice, and Lineker could well benefit from him dribbling down the outside and cutting the ball back low, not only from higher crosses, while Hoddle and Charlton could both score plenty in theory and Charlton certainly did at International level, while Lineker should also benefit from their passing, particularly Hoddle's I'd say).
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  3. PDG1978

    PDG1978 Member+

    Mar 8, 2009
    Nottingham Forest FC
    I have normally included Tardelli for Italy myself to be fair though (not using the wing-back system much or at all for previous attempts at this though), and Sastre does seem like a great player from what I read and the little I saw.

    I think Verratti has continued to impress me though, and like I say with 5 defenders (or 3 plus two wing-backs) maybe I saw it as an either/or choice, and there are only 7 subs to name too, following your precedence (which seems a reasonable number for sure). Like I say Gallego did strike me as a very good option for a midfielder who can operate from deep and be pretty robust and good defensively, but also with skills and capability to join in a fluid passing game.
    Lasha the Idiotic repped this.
  4. Lasha the Idiotic

    FC Barcelona
    Jul 19, 2021
    Thanks! I agree with most of what you said, the reason I put a DM for the Italy team was that the "Italy expert" on XT kept telling me to put a DM in my lineup (although, I didn't have a 3 Center Back line-up at that time for Italy).
  5. Lasha the Idiotic

    FC Barcelona
    Jul 19, 2021
    But yeah, I agree, I don't think a 3 center back lineup needs a DM
  6. PDG1978

    PDG1978 Member+

    Mar 8, 2009
    Nottingham Forest FC
    Oh, yeah, I think I read some of his posts (although I don't look much at that forum now) - he's a Sampdoria fan I think maybe? But yeah, I think it wouldn't be an unusual opinion for an Italian. @La-Máquina might possibly agree (although I think he also respects my (overly?) creative tendencies!), and I think traditionally Italians (and most Italian coaches) like to make sure they have some solidity in the middle of the pitch.

    Great work with all your teams anyway, like I said (lots of great players from all eras being included). I'll look at your others of course when they come (whether or not I add any more myself - I guess I did it for quite a few of the teams at one time or another, as like you hint at, several other Big Soccer posters did too).
  7. Lasha the Idiotic

    FC Barcelona
    Jul 19, 2021
    here's some more:


    Goalkeeper: Manuel Neuer
    Right Back: Berti Vogts
    Center Back: Jurgen Kohler
    Center Back: Karlheinz Forster
    Left Back: Paul Breitner
    Defensive Midfielder: Franz Beckenbauer
    B2B Midfielder: Lothar Matthaus
    Right Winger: Pierre Littbarski (I'm not sure about this one)
    Inside Left: Fritz Walter
    Support Striker: Thomas Muller (I'm not sure about this one either)
    Center Forward: Gerd Muller

    Bench: Maier, Lahm, Hummels, Szymaniak, Rahn, Rummenigge, Seeler


    Goalkeeper: Ricardo Zamora
    Right Back: Sergio Ramos
    Center Back: Fernando Hierro
    Center Back: Gerard Pique
    Left Back: Jose Antonio Camacho
    Defensive Midfielder: Sergio Busquets
    Central Midfielder: Xavi
    Central Midfielder: Luis Suarez Miramontes
    Right Winger: Andres Iniesta
    Center Forward: Raul
    Left Winger: Francisco Gento

    Bench: Casillas, Puyol, Alba, Pirri, Xabi Alonso, David Silva, Langara


    Goalkeeper: Edwin van der sar
    Sweeper: Ruud Krol
    Center Back: Jaap Stam
    Center Back: Virgil van Dijk
    Defensive Midfielder: Frank Rijkaard
    Right Midfielder: Ruud Gullit
    Central Midfielder: Willem van Hanegem
    Central Midfielder: Johan Neeskens
    Left Midfielder: Rob Rensenbrink
    Center Forward (nominally): Johan Cruyff
    Center Forward: Marco van Basten

    Bench: van Beveren, Koeman, Israel, Robben, Davids, Haan, Bergkamp


    Goalkeeper: Hugo Lloris
    Right Back: Lillian Thuram
    Center Back: Marcel Desailly
    Center Back: Laurent Blanc
    Left Back: Bixente Lizarazu
    Right Winger: Franck Ribery
    Central Midfielder: Patrick Vieira
    Central Midfielder: Jean Tigana
    Left Winger (nominally): Zinedine Zidane
    Attacking Midfielder: Michel Platini
    Center Forward: Thierry Henry

    Bench: Bats, Tresor, Bossis, Makelele, Giresse, Pires, Papin

    Next time I'll post I'll be doing Hungary, Uruguay, Portugal, and (most likely), Soviet Union
    Buyo and PDG1978 repped this.
  8. Lasha the Idiotic

    FC Barcelona
    Jul 19, 2021
    He is indeed a Sampdoria fan
  9. PDG1978

    PDG1978 Member+

    Mar 8, 2009
    Nottingham Forest FC
    Nice attempts with those again mate.

    Maybe I will stick to just the XIs in my original post this time, although I did try a few times with those nations before and others such as Hungary indeed too. I think I'm particularly unsettled/variable on how I'd put together the French midfield and attack, but for sure most of the names would match yours (I think I'd have Kopa ahead of Ribery though, and maybe even consider Fontaine for the team in place of Henry). For the Dutch XI I normally end up with Bergkamp and Cruyff as supporting forwards behind Van Basten, and Gullit placed deeper on the right of a 3 player midfield, but that's definitely an interesting way you've set up the team there and it could be fun to watch a team like that with Cruyff roaming around a lot I'd think!

    I did retrospectively question myself about the Italian selection I made though lol (about whether I'd really leave out Gianni Rivera completely and I don't think I would, even though I would say going with that formation doesn't suit him particularly well, even if he did at times at least play as a true midfield player rather than a free-roaming number 10, and in terms of numbers of players ahead of him on the pitch the line-up wouldn't be so different to ones he thrived in if he went in as a playmaker CM - I did feel though somehow Giannini was more suited to the system and players around him overall than an Antognoni for example, and it could be argued even moreso compared to a Rivera I guess). I think what I would do is change the substitutues bench, putting in Tardelli for Pirlo, and Rivera for Totti (any formation change could make Rivera a great introduction, for example something like a 4-2-1-2-1, and for that matter he could be a good option in the supporting forward roles of Meazza and Baggio himself in the main formation too).
  10. PDG1978

    PDG1978 Member+

    Mar 8, 2009
    Nottingham Forest FC
    So I thought for clarity it might be better to re-post my Italy choices since I changed my mind, and I did have a re-think and decide to do the other four Lasha has done so far too (I'd thought otherwise before as sometimes I post too much I think lol, and primarily it's best if this stays as Lasha's thread, albeit I guess it'd be good for as many other posters to add teams too, even if as we've said it's not exactly a new topic overall - a 2022 version is not the same as previous ones though maybe anyway).

    Goalkeeper: Gianluigi Buffon
    Sweeper: Gaetano Scirea
    Centre back: Alessandro Nesta
    Centre back: Franco Baresi
    Right wing back: Gianluca Zambrotta
    Left wing back: Paolo Maldini
    Centre midfielder: Giussepe Giannini
    Centre midfielder: Marco Verratti
    Inside right: Giussepe Meazza
    Inside left: Roberto Baggio
    Centre forward: Silvio Piola

    Substitutes: Dino Zoff, Fabio Cannavaro, Giacinto Facchetti, Marco Tardelli, Roberto Donadoni, Gianni Rivera, Paolo Rossi

    Goalkeeper: Joel Bats
    Right back: Manuel Amoros
    Centre back: Laurent Blanc
    Centre back: Marcel Desailly
    Left back: Bixente Lizarazu
    Centre midfielder: Jean Tigana
    Centre midfielder: Patrick Vieira
    Attacking midfielder: Michel Platini
    Attacking midfielder: Zinedine Zidane
    Roaming support forward: Raymond Kopa
    Roaming striker: Thierry Henry

    Substitutes: Fabien Barthez, Lilian Thuram, Maxime Bossis, N'Golo Kante, Robert Pires, Eric Cantona, Just Fontaine

    Goalkeeper: Edwin van der Sar
    Right back: Ruud Krol
    Centre back: Frank Rijkaard
    Centre back: Virgil van Dijk
    Left back: Adri van Tiggelen
    Right midfielder: Ruud Gullit
    Central midfielder: Johan Neeskens
    Left midfielder: Wim van Hanegem
    Inside/outside right: Dennis Bergkamp
    Inside/outside left: Johan Cruyff
    Centre forward: Marco van Basten

    Substitutes: Jan van Beveren, Ronald Koeman, Aron Winter, Clarence Seedorf, Faas Wilkes, Rob Rensenbrink, Johnny Rep

    Goalkeeper: Sepp Maier
    Right back: Berti Vogts
    Centre back: Karl-Heinz Forster
    Libero: Franz Beckenbauer
    Left back: Andreas Brehme
    Box to box midfielder: Lothar Matthaus
    Playmaker: Gunter Netzer
    Box to box midfielder: Paul Breitner
    Right side (or left side) supporting forward: Karl-Heinz Rummenigge
    Centre forward: Gerd Muller
    Left side (or right side) supporting forward: Pierre Littbarski

    Substitutes: Manuel Neuer, Matthias Sammer, Manfred Kaltz, Wolfgang Overath, Thomas Hassler, Fritz Walter, Jurgen Klinsmann

    Goalkeeper: Ricardo Zamora
    Right back: Michel Salgado
    Centre back: Fernando Hierro
    Centre back: Gerard Pique
    Left back: Rafael Gordillo
    Anchor midfielder: Sergio Busquets
    Right midfielder: Xavi
    Left midfielder: Andres Iniesta
    Attacking midfielder: Luis Suarez Miramontes
    Forward: Emilio Butragueno
    Forward: Raul

    Substitutes: Antoni Ramallets, Pirri, Jose Antonio Camacho, Josep Guardiola, Rafael Martin Vazquez, Francisco Gento, David Villa

    For Germany I was the most unsure about the starting line-up (midfield could be for example Hassler-Matthaus-Netzer, or the forward line Rummenigge-Muller-Klinsmann, and Beckenbauer can even be in midfield instead, while some adjustment like that might have seen Seeler make the subs bench for example). For Spain more unsure about the choice of subs (Xabi Alonso vs Guardiola, Michel vs Martin Vazquez, Fernando Torres vs Villa would be examples but others could come into it too quite easily I guess...and again Pirri is meant to be as much a midfield option as a defensive one) but reasonably settled on the starting line-up somehow, given their success with Tiki Taka!
    Lasha the Idiotic repped this.
  11. PDG1978

    PDG1978 Member+

    Mar 8, 2009
    Nottingham Forest FC
    I am going to make a revision to Spain even quicker than the one I made to Italy though now (again just the subs though)! Helguera for Guardiola (considering subs are meant to be cover for injuries in theory, and for example if Pique was injured maybe neither Pirri or Camacho are ideal replacements...and like I said Pirri can go into midfield even if he's less of a holder than Busquets), and Amancio for Martin Vazquez (there is enough in the way of creative midfielders without M.Vazquez and Amancio gives more of an option for a right wing forward in a changed system with Gento or perhaps Iniesta on the left for example...even though my Spain 18, like my England one, might now seem skewed towards attackers more than the others)....

    Goalkeeper: Ricardo Zamora
    Right back: Michel Salgado
    Centre back: Fernando Hierro
    Centre back: Gerard Pique
    Left back: Rafael Gordillo
    Anchor midfielder: Sergio Busquets
    Right midfielder: Xavi
    Left midfielder: Andres Iniesta
    Attacking midfielder: Luis Suarez Miramontes
    Forward: Emilio Butragueno
    Forward: Raul

    Substitutes: Antoni Ramallets, Ivan Helguera, Jose Antonio Camacho, Pirri, Amancio Amaro, Francisco Gento, David Villa
  12. PDG1978

    PDG1978 Member+

    Mar 8, 2009
    Nottingham Forest FC
    I ended up doing a couple more exercises (not necessarily suggesting you do the same Lasha, or anyone else who adds teams eventually, unless you want to of course!)....

    a) Nominating the two most likely tactical subs (I ended up with one being a change of system and one just a change of player pretty much although in some cases it would change the way the team played a bit I think) for each of the 8 teams I picked.
    b) Numbering the players in the starting line-ups 1-11 and subs 12-18 (I already did it for some reason in my head before this idea) and then ranking each number (according to the role of the player in the team - this means comparing some different roles of course), allocating between 10 points for first down to 1 point for eighth, hence allowing myself to choose where the two gaps would be to reflect a little bit perceived changes in tiers maybe, since I'm not putting any players level or going to half points for anyone)

    So the substititions:
    England - Greaves for Hoddle (change to 4-1-3-2), Shearer for Lineker
    Brazil - Ronaldinho for Garrincha (switching Pele to right of centre supporting forward, and Ronaldinho playing from the left), Junior for Nilton Santos
    Argentina - Caniggia for Ardiles (switching to 4-1-4-1 with Di Stefano and Maradona central and Caniggia and Messi playing from wider, potentially swapping sides with each other), Batistuta for Kempes
    Italy - Rivera for Scirea (change to 4-3-3 or 4-3-2-1 type system), Rossi for Piola
    France - Pires for Tigana (change to 4-1-4-1 with Pires left side and Kopa right side), Fontaine for Henry
    Germany - Hassler for Breitner (switching Matthaus into the most central midfield role, with Hassler lining up to his right), Klinsmann for Littbarski
    Netherlands - Rensenbrink for Van Hanegem (putting Cruyff deeper, operating nominally from a left midfield position, with Rensenbrink further forward as left attacker), Wilkes for Bergkamp
    Spain - Amancio for Butragueno (switching to a 4-3-3 or 4-1-2-2-1 type system), Pirri for Busquets

    And the numbers and points:
    1) Banks 10, Buffon 9, Zamora 7, Maier 6, Fillol 5, Gilmar 4, Van der Sar 3, Bats 1
    2) Cafu 10, Amoros 9, Krol 8, Zanetti 7, Vogts 6, Zambrotta 5, Salgado 2, Jones 1
    3) Maldini 10, N.Santos 9, Lizarazu 8, Brehme 7, Marzolini 6, Van Tiggelen 4, Gordillo 3, Pearce 1
    4) Neeskens 10, Vieira 9, Scirea 8, Hierro 6, Zito 5, Walker 4, Forster 3, Ruggeri 1
    5) Beckenbauer 10, Redondo 9, Rijkaard 8, Edwards 7, Nesta 5, C.Alberto 4, Blanc 3, Pique 1
    6) Baresi 10, Moore 9, Matthaus 8, Passarella 6, Desailly 5, Van Dijk 4, Domingos Da Guia 3, Busquets 1
    7) Garrincha 10, Matthews 9, Bergkamp 8, Meazza 7, Tigana 5, Littbarski 4, Butregueno 3, Ardiles 1
    8) Platini 10, Kempes 8, Lineker 7, Didi 6, Xavi 5, Van Hanegem 3, Breitner 2, Verratti 1
    9) Di Stefano 10, Van Basten 9, Charlton 8, Ronaldo 7, Muller 6, Kopa 4, Iniesta 2, Piola 1
    10) Pele 10, Cruyff 9, Maradona 8, Zidane 7, Hoddle 5, Netzer 4, Suarez 3, Giannini 1
    11) Messi 10, Zico 9, Baggio 8, Rummenigge 7, Henry 6, Gullit 4, Finney 3, Raul 1
    First XI points totals: Brazil 77, Argentina 71, Netherlands 70, France 67, Italy 65, England 64, Germany 63, Spain 34
    12) Rivera 10, Shearer 8, Hassler 7, Junior 5, Villa 4, Kante 3, Sosa 2, Winter 1
    13) Shilton 10, Zoff 9, Neuer 8, Carizzo 7, Ramallets 4, Julio Cesar 3, Barthez 2, Van Beveren 1
    14) Facchetti 10, Aldair 9, Koeman 8, Pirri 6, Kaltz 5, Wright 4, Bossis 3, Perfumo 1
    15) Falcao 10, Moreno 9, Gascoigne 8, Cannavaro 6, Seedorf 5, Thuram 4, Overath 3, Camacho 1
    16) Socrates 10, Pires 9, Sammer 8, Rep 6, Tardelli 5, Robson 4, Gallego 2, Helguera 1
    17) Ronaldinho 10, Cantona 8, Rensenbrink 7, Barnes 6, Walter 5, Caniggia 4, Gento 3, Donadoni 1
    18) Romario 10, Klinsmann 9, Fontaine 7, Greaves 6, Batistuta 5, Rossi 4, Wilkes 3, Amancio 1
    Substitute points totals: Brazil 57, England 46, Italy 45, Germany 45, France 36, Netherlands 31, Argentina 30, Spain 20
    Overall points (maximum 180, minimum 18): Brazil 134, Italy 110, England 110, Germany 108, France 103, Argentina 101, Netherlands 101, Spain 54)

    I do think if I tried the same with the next 8 teams and Spain were in that rather than a Hungary or Portugal for example, I might give them comfortable the best scores of the 8 teams. I guess I'm still seeing the top 7 as ahead of the rest and these results show that (even if it's a bit of a weird/random way to make scores!), although maybe Spain's team cohesion would make them rightly the choice to join in a top 8, in a theoretical tournament or something. I think Brazil having the best collection of attacking/overall players (for a first XI, but even moreso going beyond it possibly) seems about right though still.
    Lasha the Idiotic repped this.
  13. Isaías Silva Serafim

    Real Madrid
    Dec 2, 2021
    Nat'l Team:
  14. PDG1978

    PDG1978 Member+

    Mar 8, 2009
    Nottingham Forest FC
    Interesting question mate. Of course it is difficult to compare directly between eras and with limited footage, and maybe it's easy to favour the 'legend' (although maybe already Roberto Carlos can be considered one too, and at certain points in his career there was a lot of hype and fame about him), but I would say that Nilton Santos seems probably to have been a bit more tidy and reliable, both in terms of defensive actions and concentration, and in possession. Of course, though he could be very good at times it seems entering the attack, he was not as explosive or with such a dangerous shot as Roberto Carlos.

    I think by the way that Junior got the place as a sub because of his versatility, and I'm not really sure that as a left wing back, or normal left back even, I'd think of him ahead of Roberto Carlos (but maybe it's a close call - Junior on a great/good day would be better and more useful than Roberto Carlos on an average/bad day of course in that role).
    Isaías Silva Serafim repped this.
  15. Lasha the Idiotic

    FC Barcelona
    Jul 19, 2021
    I think Nilton Santos is far more reliable defensively
  16. Lasha the Idiotic

    FC Barcelona
    Jul 19, 2021
    great idea! I'll do my version
  17. PDG1978

    PDG1978 Member+

    Mar 8, 2009
    Nottingham Forest FC
    Ok cool! Will be interesting to see another version, with some different players aligned to different numbers, and see how it comes out!
  18. Lasha the Idiotic

    FC Barcelona
    Jul 19, 2021

    1) Buffon 10, Zamora 9, Banks 8, Neuer 6, Fillol 4, Gilmar 3, van der Sar 2, Lloris 1
    2) D. Santos 10, Vogts 9, Krol 8, Thuram 7, Zanetti 6, Zambrotta 4, Armfield 2, Camacho 1
    3) N. Santos 10, Facchetti 9, Lizarazu 7, Pique 5, Marzolini 4, Stam 3, Cole 2, Forster 1
    4) Neeskens 10, Nesta 9, Monti 8, Vieira 7, C. Alberto 6, Hierro 3, Kohler 2, Wright 1
    5) Beckenbauer 10, Maldini 9, Rijkaard 8, Zito 6, Needham 5, Ramos 4, Blanc 3, Salomon 1
    6) Moore 10, Baresi 9, Passarella 8, Breitner 6, Desailly 5, van Dijk 3, Busquets 2, Domingos 1
    7) Matthews 10, Garrincha 9, Meazza 7, Rensenbrink 6, Redondo 5, Raul 4, Tigana 3, Littbarski 1
    8) Platini 10, Xavi 9, Matthaus 8, Didi 7, Sastre 6, van Hanegem 5, Gerrard 3, Benetti 1
    9) Di Stefano 10, Ronaldo 9, van Basten 8, Piola 6, G. Muller 5, Lawton 4, Henry 3, Gento 1
    10) Pele 10, Cruyff 9, Maradona 8, Charlton 7, Zidane 6, Suarez 4, Walter 3, Pirlo 1
    11) Messi 10, Zico 9, Gullit 7, Iniesta 5, Riva 4, T. Muller 3, Ribery 2, Bloomer 1

    Total starting XI points: Brazil 82, Italy 69, Argentina 69, Netherlands 69, Germany 55, France 54, England 52, Spain 47.
    PDG1978 repped this.
  19. Perú FC

    Perú FC Member+

    Nov 16, 2007
    Lima, Perú
    I'm surprised that both have coincided with Carlos Alberto as centre-back. Of course, he excelled there in his late career, especially with Fluminense, but I'm not so sure how to compare him to the development of the best Brazilian centre-backs and I doubt if his sweeper mold was complementary to the similar one of Domingos.

    Brazil has exceptional attacking full-backs, but I agree that in a kind of ideal XI it's best to balance the defense with their best defensive-focus full-backs to give more freedom to their enormous attacking options.


    - Domingos ----- Thiago Silva
    Djalma Santos ------------------------------------------------------ Nílton Santos

    Toninho Cerezo ----- Falcão -----

    Garrincha ------------------------- Pelé ---------------------- Ronaldinho

    Bench: (GK) Júlio César, (RWB) Dani Alves, (CB) Luís Pereira, (LWB) Roberto Carlos, (DM) Mauro Silva, (CM) Didi, (AM) Zico, (RW) Jairzinho, (SS) Rivaldo, (ST) Romário.
    PDG1978 repped this.
  20. Perú FC

    Perú FC Member+

    Nov 16, 2007
    Lima, Perú
    Something that always surprised me is that despite the fact that Italy was recognized for his defensive expertise, they didn't have a prominent defensive midfielder, one of the top all-timers (considering Monti as Argentine).



    Bergomi ----- Baresi ------ Maldini
    Zambrotta ------------------------------------------------------------ Facchetti
    Tardelli ------------------------------------
    Meazza ---------------------
    Bench: (GK) Zoff, (CB) Nesta, (SW) Scirea, (CB) Cannavaro, (DM) Andreolo, (CM) Benetti, (AM) Totti, (WF) Conti, (SS) Baggio, (ST) Riva.
    PDG1978 repped this.
  21. wm442433

    wm442433 Member+

    Sep 19, 2014
    FC Nantes
    Bergomi, when you have Cannavaro or most likely Nesta on the bench... ?
    Bergomi played RB in a 5-man defense during the World cup Final. Nesta could do anything, played FB in the beginnings if that's the thing (covering this area). Nesta is not so much of a libero that it would be a problem with Baresi imo.
    The biggest problem in your team (apart from picking Bergomi) is the gap in the Facchetti-Pirlo-Rivera zone, Pirlo and most importantly Rivera being not really defensive. A kind of Seedorf would fit instead of Rivera probably though, for what remains a fantasy team (is that Benetti?).
    Given some tactical thoughts have been putted into it. Otherwise, as completely a "Dream Team", no problem of course (apart from picking Bergomi seriously).

    Realistically, you can have 5 men at the back, the problem remains the pairing of Baresi and Facchetti (without forgetting the problem of the left area of the midfield; Facchetti will not play LWB and DM at the same time). It's one or the other, or Scirea, in a more restricted role as he could do, although in Italy, they also thought that these two could not play together.
    Rivera and Mazzola then, that's another question but at the back it's very important.

    More defenders doesn't mean a better defense.

    I'd just go full "dream team" for my part or with these intermediate solutions you finish with a midfield Falcao-Cerezo for Brazil, which in reality, in the last rounds of a tournament shown its limits.

    But that's interesting attempts though as it shows the weaknesses of each nations : France has not the pivotal CF that could be useful to work with the three number 10's (Giroud, Lacombe... Rocheteau by the end, in '85-86, but he got injured before the semi-finals).
    Italy has not so much DM's as you PeruFC says (but it is a problem if the team is well-organized?) like France has. Here, Brazil has Mauro Silva that can be useful with a 4-man defense... but I think that reallistically, if Brazil or Argentina can win a World Cup again it will be with a '5-3-2' something like that (remember 2002).

    I'm with the ones who pick C. Alberto at CB in a 4-man defense for a Brazil dream team btw when the other is T. Silva with his psychological problems when playing for Brazil or Domingos Da Guia who did rugby tackles. As a RB, I think he helped Brito (was it Brito?) a lot in '70 already. Juan is underrated btw I think, compared to oldies like Domingos or later, Mauro Ramos. It's really not Brazil's force, it is well-known. The 2002 team was well organized defensively with complementarities... and for sure, having Cafu and R. Carlos to play this system is the best thing ever. Even in a 4-man defense, having them behind oldies like the two Santos is a bit disrespectful for modern players of their caliber, I think. Of course they were not always perfect defensively, to say the least, but so were the two Santos. They're just equal given their respective eras imo (plus the two Santos had less direct concurrency worldwide to be compared with. There was other very good FB but not with the quality+palmares of Maldini and... Thuram, well). Thus, I think that Djalma and Nilton were a bit the choice by default in the World's best XI's that could appear here and there during those years (surely deserved but it can be relativized to some extent).

    Not an easy task for sure.

    Spain is another dilemma, between the players who could not reach a semi-final or anything and the actual team with its few variations that won everything.

    Whereas, with Holland, we have an impression of total flexibility - and compability between eras.

    A Portugal XI must not be a big challenge apparently, although many contemporary players can be in the equation at the back since some years. The level of difficulty/ interest to build their all-time XI must be about the same as for France since there's like a front-4 that is almost non debatable.
    Right behind it, Coluna is often an automatic choice but it is reallly a clear cut (there's Oceano who's perhaps stronger defensively? There's Maniche and what about Deco, where he could fit?).

    Uruguay is interesting too with plenty of players who just succeed to the others in quite similar fashion and or similar level. Btw, as a "pure CF", is Petrone still an automatic choice over Cavani?
    peterhrt repped this.
  22. PDG1978

    PDG1978 Member+

    Mar 8, 2009
    Nottingham Forest FC
    I thought after all why not expand my own selections to factor in 8 more teams (but this time for the shirt number points scoring I will try with also Spain again in there, so 9 teams, and just one points position not used this time). I think if it was nations as they are today then maybe I would have chosen Belgium and Poland (with Soviet Union and Czechoslovakia then in doubt, not so much Yugoslavia because I use all the old players who played for Yugoslavia anyway and most of the best teams came from those times...although a few of the players did have relative success with Croatia of course)....

    Goalkeeper: Gyula Grosics
    Right back: Jeno Buzanszky
    Centre back/sweeper: Sandor Matrai
    Centre back/DM: Kalmon Meszoly
    Left back: Sandor Biro (I prefer to know the players well enough from footage so I doubted this choice, as there are options from the 50s to the 80s that come to mind but it seems like his calibre was high enough to be in probably)
    Deep-lying playmaker/DM: Jozsef Bozsik
    Box to box player/DM: Gyorgy Sarosi
    Deep-lying centre-forward/AM: Nandor Hidegkuti
    Right side supporting forward: Florian Albert
    Left side supporting forward: Ferenc Puskas
    Central forward: Sandor Kocsis

    Subs: Antal Szabo, Gyula Lorant, Mihaly Lantos, Jozsef Zakarias, Lajos Detari, Zoltan Czibor, Ferenc Bene

    Goalkeeper: Costa Pereira
    Right back: Joao Domingos Pinto
    Centre back: Humberto Coelho
    Centre back: Ricardo Carvalho
    Left back: Dimas
    Right CM/AM: Luis Figo
    Central/anchor midfielder: Mario Coluna
    Left CM/AM: Rui Costa
    Right(left) wing forward: Cristiano Ronaldo
    Left(right) wing forward: Paulo Futre
    Main striker: Eusebio

    Subs: Rui Patricio, Germano, Fabio Coentrao, Paulo Sousa, Maniche, Jose Augusto, Nuno Gomes

    Goalkeeper: Ladislao Mazurkiewicz
    Right back: Victor Rodriguez Andrade
    Centre back/sweeper: Jose Nasazzi
    Centre back: Jose Santamaria
    Left back: Ricardo Pavoni
    Right DM/CM: Jose Leandro Andrade
    Left DM/CM: Obdulio Varela
    Right AM: Juan Schiaffino
    Left AM: Enzo Francescoli
    Support striker: Hector Scarone
    Striker: Fernando Morena

    Subs: Roque Maspoli, Diego Godin, Paolo Montero, Pedro Rocha, Luis Cubilla, Luis Suarez, Diego Forlan

    Goalkeeper: Peter Schmeichel
    Right back: John Sivebaek
    Centre back: Andreas Christensen
    Centre back/sweeper: Morten Olsen
    Left back: Jan Heintze
    Anchor/bos to box midfielder: Soren Lerby
    Right/central midfielder: Frank Arnesen
    Left/attacking midfielder: Michael Laudrup
    Roaming right winger: Brian Laudrup
    Roaming left winger: Allan Simonsen
    Striker: Preben Elkjaer

    Subs: Thomas Sorensen, Jakob Kjeldbjerg, Daniel Agger, Joachim Maehle, Thomas Gravesen, Karl Aage Praest, John Hansen be continued with Soviet Union,. Sweden, Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia
  23. PDG1978

    PDG1978 Member+

    Mar 8, 2009
    Nottingham Forest FC
    Suggested most likely tactical substitutions for these:

    Hungary - Czibor for Buzanszky (Matrai to right back, Sarosi to centre back, two wide players with Czibor on the left, Puskas partnering Kocsis), Bene for Albert

    Portugal - Sousa for Futre (changing to 4-2-2-2 magic square but with more tendency to width from Figo and Rui Costa than for example the French version), Coentrao for Dimas

    Uruguay - Suarez for Francescoli (changing to 4-2-1-2-1), Forlan for Morena

    Denmark - Gravesen for Arnesen (changing to 4-2-3-1 with Gravesen-Lerby as CMs and M.Laudrup as central AM), Maehle for Heintze
  24. PDG1978

    PDG1978 Member+

    Mar 8, 2009
    Nottingham Forest FC
    Soviet Union
    Goalkeeper: Lev Yashin
    Sweeper: Albert Shesternyov
    Right back: Vladimir Bessonov
    Centre back: Oleg Kuznetsov
    Left back: Vasily Rats
    Right CM/DM: Valery Voronin
    Left CM/DM: Igor Netto
    Attacking midfield: Valentin Ivanov
    Right wing forward: Igor Chislenko
    Centre forward: Andriy Shevchenko
    Left wing forward: Oleg Blokhin

    Subs: Rinat Dasaev, Vadiz Khidiyatulin, Anatoliy Demienenko, Vladimir Muntyan, Aleksandr Zavarov, Igor Belanov, Nikita Simonyan

    Goalkeeper: Ronnie Hellstrom
    Right back: Roland Nilsson
    Centre back: Jan Eriksson
    Centre back: Patrick Andersson
    Left back: Erik Nilsson
    Anchor midfielder: Stefan Schwarz
    Right wing: Kurt Hamrin
    Right CM/AM playmaker: Gunnar Gren
    Left CM/AM playmaker: Nils Liedholm
    Left wing: Lennart Skoglund
    Striker: Gunnar Nordahl

    Subs: Thomas Ravelli, Bengt Gustavsson, Orvar Bergmark, Jonas Thern, Tomas Brolin, Henrik Larsson, Torbjorn Nilsson

    Goalkeeper: Ivo Viktor
    Sweeper: Anton Ondrus
    Right back: Zdenek Grygera
    Centre back: Jan Popluhar
    Left back: Marek Jankulovski
    Central midfielder: Antonin Panenka
    Central midfielder: Josef Masopust
    Attacking midfielder: Tomas Rosicky
    Attacking midfielder: Pavel Nedved
    Forward: Ladislav Kubala (considering him to be eligible but Josef Bican not because he played for Austria first and was born there too)
    Forward: Antonin Puc

    Subs: Petr Cech, Thomas Ujfalusi, Karol Dobias, Tomas Galasek, Patrik Berger, Marian Masny, Oldrich Nejedly

    Goalkeeper: Vladimir Beara
    Right back: Branko Stankovic
    Centre back: Josip Katalinski
    Centre back: Branko Zebec
    Left back: Robert Jarni
    Right CM/AM: Dragan Stojkovic
    Anchor/box to box midfielder: Ivan Gudelj
    Left CM/AM: Safet Susic
    Right winger/supporting forward: Dejan Savicevic
    Left winger/supporting forward: Dragan Dzajic
    Striker: Davor Suker

    Subs: Samir Handanovic, Velibor Vasovic, Dragan Holcer, Vladimir Jugovic, Zvonimir Boban, Bernard Vukas, Stjepan Bobek
  25. Lasha the Idiotic

    FC Barcelona
    Jul 19, 2021

    Goalkeeper: Gyula Grosics
    Right Back: Jeno Buzanszky
    Center Back: Kalman Meszoly
    Left Back: Sandor Biro (Idk about him but the alternative is Lantos and I don't think that's a very good idea).
    Defensive Midfielder: Jozsef Bozsik
    B2B Midfielder: Gyorgy Sarosi
    Right Winger: Kalman Konrad
    Right Forward: Laszlo Kubala
    Center Forward: Sandor Kocsis
    Left Forward: Ferenc Puskas
    Left Winger: Zoltan Czibor

    very old school formation I know, but I thought it was the best way.
    PDG1978 repped this.

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