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Rank Your Top Ten Barcelona Forwards!

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#1   Roger

Roger

Posted 28 December 2011 - 10:44 PM

How would you rank the top 10 forwards to play for FC Barcelona of all time? Some obvious names to select from are, in no particular order:

Messi
Ronaldo (34 in 37, pichichi)
Maradona
Rivaldo
Cesar (195 in 287, pichichi, 235 overall)
Romario (WPOTY first)
Cruyff (d'or)
Ronaldinho (d'or x 2)
Stoichkov (d'or, 83 in 175)
Eto'o (pichichi, 107, 144)
Kubala
Henry
Villa
Ibrahimovic
Kluivert
Gary Lineker
Suarez (first FCB player to win the Golden ball I think)
Quini (won Pichichi)
Paulino Alcantara (top scorer of all time when friendly matches included, but we're talking 1920's)
Gamper (club founder)
Mariano Martin (pichichi, 97 in 112, a massive force in the early 40's, career cut short with major knee injury... scored 54 in 43 games over his best 2 seasons).
Re' (60's forward, 56 in 84, pichchi)


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My top 10 list today:

1. Messi - GOAT that he is. 209 goals, 87 assists.... and counting. And still so many years left!!!! Not even at 300 matches played yet either.

2. Cruyff - A legend of the game, only fitting that he falls behind only Messi. An ability to create and score goals. He was a passer of the ball who also scored when it was there for him. He played a similar role that Messi is playing for us now, though Messi has shown he can create and score even more than Cruyff could.... which is saying something.

3. Kubala - 194 goals in 256 matches, but he gets 3rd in the list because of 51/52 season: 39 goals in 28 matches!!!

4. Rivaldo - Some will call him a midfield player, I don't. This was the first FC Barcelona player I remember being wow'ed by fully and emotionally. Part of that is because I was finally old enough to really understand what I was seeing, and part of it was because the guy was just so fucking good. His stats back up this selection, but his stats don't tell the story at all of how good he was.

5. Cesar - 235 goals to top our club list of scorers by a long shot. That took him 351 matches though, which is why he's not top of this particular list of mine.

(Side Note: Kubala and Cesar in the 51/52 season combined for 68 goals in all competitions! They won the league with a GD of +49 (30 game season).)

6. Eto'o - I love Eto'o. What a pure scoring talent. So athletic, such a deadly nose for goal. If not for his knee injuries, he'd be well above his already amazing 130 goals in just 5 seasons with us. Many will put players like Ronaldinho and the other top Brazilian talent we've had above Eto'o, and I think that's a mistake. If Eto'o where Brazilian, people would call him a legend, and he'd have at least 1 world cup as a top scorer golden boot in the tournament... but he's not Brazilian, so there you go.

7. Ronaldinho - Yes, Ronaldinho finally gets into my list AFTER Eto'o. At his peak, he was legendary, no question. Something about his last seasons, and his faults, keeps me from giving him a higher rank in my list. Despite all he did for us, and has done in the game... I'm always left with a feeling of "what could have been" with him. I feel he could have been in the greatest ever debates, but due to his own lack of effort and determination, fell short.

8. Suarez - Also from the "Kubala" era in the 50's at FC Barcelona, and went on to really make a name for himself at Inter in the 60's. One of Spain's greatest players historically, and while much of that was once he had already moved on to play club football at Inter, there is no question that he was already on his way to being a great during his 6 or 7 seasons at FCB early on.

9. Ronaldo - I know it was only a season, but what a season it was. He's lower on the list than he might be for others due to the simple fact that it was only a single season at the club.

10a. Stoichkov - This guy is about far more than just his goals, which only total about 80 or 90. He was a Golden Ball winner for us, and brought amazing passion to the pitch. He was a forward that also knew how to create for others.

10b. Mariano Martin - If not for a knee injury that turned off the goal scoring early for this guy, he would have been a legend and topped our scoring charts. From 41/42 season, he had 3 amazing seasons in which he scored over a goal a game with 71 goals in 66 games. If not for that knee injury in the following season while playing for Catalonia in a friendly match... who knows what he would have done.

I know, that's a top 11. I couldn't decide between the last two for that 10th spot, not wanting to leave either of them out of the list. There are a ton of other players who could probably make it into that 10th spot as well.... but hey, that's my choice and I'm sticking to it.

Some notable absences from my list:
Maradona doesn't make my list. Injuries kept him from being at his best for us, and he left too quickly to go to Napoli.
Romario also doesn't make my list. Not enough time for me at the club. The only way short 1 or 2 season players make my list is if one of those seasons was an ultra special season, like Ronaldo.

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Roger

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#2   Vikipedia

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Posted 28 December 2011 - 11:16 PM

Good list, Roga. I might have Eto'o over Rivaldo simply because of longevity and well Rivaldo as good as he was, he could've been even better for us IMO. Not that I resent him for that or anything.

Also agreed with Samu over Ronnie. Ronnie was unplayable from 04-06 but Eto'o has been playing on a world class level since 03-04 and is still at it today. More consistent and ultimately gave more to FCB despite Ronaldinho being a genius in those 2 glorious years.

"Messi is the one who makes the difference, who takes us to another level. He'll never be repeated. He's the best player I've ever seen, the best player I'll ever coach." - Pep Guardiola

#3   .Mario.

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Posted 29 December 2011 - 03:17 PM

Good list, and I totally agree with Eto'o above Ronaldinho, but I hate this "If he were brazilian, he'd be WPOTY" argument. I really do.

#4   Roger

Roger

Posted 29 December 2011 - 05:17 PM

Good list, and I totally agree with Eto'o above Ronaldinho, but I hate this "If he were brazilian, he'd be WPOTY" argument. I really do.


Well, the point is, a player of that talent would have more chances to shine in the international tournaments for country, and there would be more hype around him because of it. You may not like the argument, but I think it is a valid one. Imagine how many world cups Eto'o would have been starting for Brazil..... he would have made a real name for himself on the world stage with that, IMHO.

Roger

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#5   .Mario.

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Posted 30 December 2011 - 02:52 AM

Well, if guys like Adriano, Ronaldinho and Ronaldo didn't like le alcohol and stuff like that so much, Eto'o would barely play for us. But yeah, considering that, he would probably be our #9 from 2006 to 2010. Anyway, I think it's just supposition and not a valid argument at all. Like saying "If his name were Modricinho, everyone would say he's the best fucking midfielder" or stuff like that. Meh.