When great teams meet, it is very nice to see the strongest duels; It is also interesting to know the opinion of the great players regarding the best defender they have faced in their career. After asking the question “Who is the strongest defender you have ever faced
“, sometimes you get surprising answers, as in some examples that we will see below.
Best Defender Faced – Active Players’ Opinion
Lionel Messi is certainly one of the best strikers in football history and has caused sleepless nights for several of his scorers and his answer to the original question leaves everyone stunned. For the Barcelona star, in fact, the toughest defender was Pablo Maffeo who played for Girona . In 2017 the newly promoted team faced the Blaugrana and Maffeo and was attacked all the time by Messi , preventing him from scoring, so much so that it remains in the attacker’s memory.
For Cristiano Ronaldo , the most difficult defender to face was Ashley Cole , who made the Portuguese suffer when he played for Manchester United . The 5-time Ballon d’Or declared that Cole did not allow him to breathe throughout the match.
For former Barcelona players Suarez and Neymar, the best defender met on a football field was the pivot of the rivals of Real Madrid , Sergio Ramos , flag of his club and of Spain.
The playmaker Hazard (who played for Chelsea) has indicated Virgil Van Dijk as the most difficult to face due to his physical strength coupled with great speed. In a game in which the Belgian was playing tip, the defender practically did not let him touch the ball. Anyone who has seen him play can hardly blame Hazard.
Swedish ace Ibrahimovic , on the other hand, said he considered Giorgio Chiellinithe toughest defender and difficult to overcome but he also said, at the same time, that playing against us is stimulating.
Bomber Robert Lewandowski , currently the best striker in the world, sees, like many others, Sergio Ramos as the best opponent. The fight between these two giants is a beautiful sight to behold. Perisic is also of the same opinion as his former teammate at Bayern .
Best Defender Faced – Past Players’ Opinion
As for Alan Shearer, the defender who hurt him the most was Tony Adams ; he surprises us, however, when he defines Sol Campbellan overrated and relatively easy to mark player. The striker said he had no particular problems playing against him.
Ronaldo the phenomenon has no doubts about who was the best and makes the name of Paolo Maldini, followed by Nesta and Cannavaro . However, they too had their work cut out against him because he was a footballer literally impossible to stop. The same opinion of the Brazilian is shared by Cristian Vieri and Antonio Cassano, who consider the AC Milan captain the strongest defender of all time.
Er pupone Francesco Totti, like Ronaldo, mentions a player belonging to the team he faced in the derby of his city, with whom he also played in the national team. We are talking about the very strong Alessandro Nesta , one of the best Italian defenders ever.
Even the Fiorentina striker Batistuta can say that he played against real mastiffs, among which he most remembers Baresi and Tsar Vierchowod , in the years in which the Italian school of defenders was the best ever.
The best number 10 in the history of Italian football, Roberto Baggio , says that when he saw Paolo Maldini arrivehe already knew that it would hardly pass. Nonetheless, we remember actions in which the impassable defense of Milan burns alone, but in any case it was not easy for them to stem this phenomenon either.
For former players it is customary, as you can see, to indicate Italian defenders as the toughest and most mangy of all; at the time our scorers were really good while those of today are a little less so. Zibi Boniek , for example, considers Ciro Ferrara as the most difficult one ever faced.
Pele and Maradona
We close with the two strongest players in the history of football, Maradona and Pele. According to the pibe de oro the best defender in the history of football was Franco Baresi; if we look at the summary of the final of USA 94, we can get an idea of the greatness of this impressive player and we probably agree with Diego.
Pele , on the other hand, considers Trapattoni the best both from a technical and a human point of view and praises his great fairness on the pitch.