mandag den 23. november 2009

The 200 best players in the world: 176-173

Hey the list is back!


The goal is a lot more updates at least until Christmas where things inevitably will be delayed some.

Certainly I can't wait to reach top 100 where the players chosen and their placings have been much more set unlike the 100-200 ranked players where I find myself constantly changing things up.

Anyways here is the update:

Introduction to the list.

The list so far:


200: Alberto Zapater - Genoa - Spain
199: Nikola Zigic - Valencia - Serbia
198: Sergio Ramos - Real Madrid - Spain
197: Lucio - Inter - Brazil
196: John Obi Mikel - Chelsea - Nigeria
195: Sergio Busquets - Barcelona - Spain
194: Philippe Mexes - Roma -France
193: Anatolij Tymoshchuk - Bayern München - Ukraine
192: Theo Walcott - Arsenal - England
191: Aaron Ramsey - Arsenal - Wales
190: Pepe - Real Madrid - Portugal
189: Sergei Semak - Rubin Kazan - Russia
188: Alberto Aquilani - Liverpool - Italy
187: Clarence Seedorf - Milan - Holland
186: Diego Capel - Sevilla - Spain
185: Yossi Benayoun - Liverpool - Israel
184: Riccardo Montolivo - Fiorentina - Italy
183: Kolo Toure - Manchester City -Côte d'Ivoire
182: Yuri Zhirkov - Chelsea - Russia
181: Martin Demichelis - Bayern Munich - Argentina
180: Marouane Fellaini - Everton - Belgium
179: Cristian Zapata - Udinese - Colombia
178: Tim Cahill - Everton - Australia
177: Paul Scholes - Manchester United - England


Arda Turan - Galatasaray - Turkey


A difficult player to rank since I don't see him very often.

He is probably the most talented player coming out of Turkey since Emre Belözoğlu.

Emre who after an up and down time abroad now is back in Turkey, and who a little surprisingly is still only 29.

Emre seems to have been around forever but right now I would say I have even less of an idea of how he is doing than Arda Turan, and therefore perhaps mistakenly didn't even consider him for the list.
At EURO 2008 Emre unfortunately got injured in the opening game and instead it was Arda who shined and also Arda who makes the list!

For years and years heralded as one of Europe's prime talents, Arda Turan is now 22, captain of Galatasaray, has 34 caps for his country and is already quite an experienced player.

He has very good technical ability. Dribbling, shooting and passing and creates goals for himself and for teammates. He is also comfortable on either wing, as well as playing up front working with a striker.
Something like his work-rate I have to admit I'm not really sure of so I can't say whether that's a strength or weakness of his, but if I was to point to something of the latter I would say his athletic ability doesn't seem to be all that great. Neither when it comes to strength or real speed, and that's what keeps him behind the next ranked player and others to yet to come. And the difference in level of competition that he faces.
Hopefully like Emre before him, we'll see Arda in one of the top leagues in not too many years.


Ezequiel Lavezzi - Napoli - Argentina


A notoriously inconsistent performer Lavezzi has unique acceleration going for him. In fact I think it's safe to say that with the ball at his feet he must be a candidate for the fastest player around.
That of course also tells you something about his very good control and great balance. His "Tevez like" stockiness and low center of gravity helps too. Though not as strong or hardworking as Tevez he is definitely faster.

The downside is that it just seems like he doesn't get enough out of those qualities and therefore at times isn't all that effective and helpful to his team.

He doesn't consistently make good or even right decisions. In fact he often picks the worst solutions and his passing skills aren't that good either. And rarely good enough to create. That could easily have a lot to do with bad decision making of course but either way at the moment it just isn't good enough.

Then there is his questionable stamina and/or fitness. If Napoli really do fulfill their ambitions of European football, could Lavezzi even make good contributions twice a week?

His skills on the ball are so unique that he still makes the list but he needs to improve in other areas in my view to have any chance of climbing to somewhere much higher on the list, where I'm sure a lot of people, overly impressed by his skills, would feel he should be placed.


Klaas Jan Huntelaar - AC Milan - Netherlands


Currently having something of a nightmare season for his new club AC Milan which has hurt his ranking a lot.

How much of it is his own fault though I'm not really sure. At the moment Milan is playing with three forwards where one of them, Ronaldinho is pretty much immobile and then to have Huntelaar in there too who does almost all his work exclusively in the box is a bit too much of a balance destroyer and would expose the very thinly occupied midfield behind even further than what's going on at the moment.

Marco Borriello who plays instead of Huntelaar and enjoying something of a resurrection this year, after his own struggles settling at Milan last season, isn't as impressive as Huntelaar can be in the box or as dangerous, but he is good at that too and more versatile when it comes to other things. And he is mobile and has some pace which the Milan lineup desperately needs.

So as long as that system is rewarded with results and Borriello as well as Ronaldinho shows reasonable form it's going to be tough for Huntelaar to establish himself in the lineup.

But all those things are far from given and I'm pretty confident that alone up front with more midfielders behind him or in a partnership with basically any of the other Milan forwards that Huntelaar's striker qualities would come through and he would be scoring a decent amount of goals in Serie A too.


William Gallas- Arsenal - France


In some ways this is the Kolo Toure writeup all over again except there have definitely been times where I haven't thought of Gallas very highly.
Perhaps mistakenly, but to me he often seemed like an erratic defender who while hugely talented was guilty of costly bonehead plays.

At the moment I'm not really seeing that. In fact he does an admirable job of keeping things together in the Arsenal central defense together with his colleague Vermaelen often directly preventing dangerous situations.
Meanwhile at City (albeit arguably with an even harder job for Mark Hughes erratic lineups, sometimes they work, sometimes they don't!) Toure often not at 100 percent isn't really doing the same.

Gallas good track record shouldn't be ignored either.

Previously for Chelsea whether playing as a fullback, something he probably still has the speed to do, or in central defense with John Terry, he was in no way a liability on what was a very good defensive team under Mourinho winning the league two years in a row.

For France also he was part of the near flawless defensive efforts that took apart both Spain and Brazil on the way to the final at the 2006 World Cup.

Gallas despite not having great height impressively rarely misses a beat in the air which speaks volumes about his athleticism.
At 32 now his agility and speed really seems as good as it always was and he is of course very good with the ball as well.
He is also something of a threat to score from set pieces.

With age and experience the errors (bad positioning/bad decisions) have become rare. It lands him at 173!

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