At club level, it simply doesn’t get any bigger than the UEFA Champions League.
And, depending on who you ask, it might even be more prestigious than the FIFA World Cup.
“[The Champions League] is the most important in the world,” stated Jose Mourinho in the days before his Inter Milan side kicked off against Bayern Munich in the 2010 Final (via ESPNFC). “It is even bigger than the World Cup, because the teams in it are at a higher level than national teams, who can’t buy the best players. If you hold it to be important, you have to transmit that to the players.”
We hold it to be important, indeed. Which is why, over the following slideshow, we will rank the 20 best players in the history of the competition that replaced the old European Cup in 1992.
You’ll no doubt recognize many, if not all of the names included, but if you think we’ve missed some, feel free to add them in the comments below.
In any event, we’ve got a galaxy of stars to read about. Let’s get to it.