Best Champions League defenders
Best Champions League defenders? Top Champions League defenders? Greatest Champions League defenders? Who makes the hall of fame? We begin by taking a look at the Champions League’s greatest players, the greatest defenders to play in the competition.
Here we will take a look at the best defenders!
Today we talk about defenders, and the best defenders ever to grace the finest competition in the world. Defenders could make the list for any number of reasons, such as special performances or contribution to their team, their order in the list does not depend on number of winners medals alone. To clarify, the players must have won the modern Champions League to qualify for this list, so greats such as Franz Beckenbauer don’t feature.
Best Champions League defenders
So let’s dive into the list, here are Sillyseason’s best Champions League defenders in history!!
10) Dani Alves – Barcelona – 3x winner
He’s had his fair share of criticism over his career, but Dani Alves is a legend in this club competition and has won this famous competition a huge 3 times, in 2009, 2011 and 2015, a worthy start to this list, but not as legendary as other defenders who’ve won it less. He currently plays for PSG.
9) Phillip Lahm – Bayern Munich – 1x winner and 2x runner-up
Lahm is one of the most loyal players to a club you’ll ever see, and could well have won more Champions Leagues before the end of his career. He won it in 2013 with a famous Bayern win at Wembley over Jurgen Klopp’s Borussia Dortmund, it completed his collection of medals.
8) Cafu – AC Milan – 1x winner
Cafu had an incredible engine on him at right-back, but only claimed 1 winners medal before the end of his career, beating Liverpool in Athens in 2007. He was denied another title in 2005 when Liverpool stole the game away from them on penalties in Istanbul.
7) Sergio Ramos – Real Madrid – 4x winner
Ramos has slowly developed into one of the world’s best players over the recent years. He begun his career at the club he is now, Real Madrid. He finally managed to win the Champions League for the first time in 2014, when Real recorded a 4-1 win over rivals Atletico in extra time. 2 years later, same opposition, he does it again, winning his second medal and scoring in the final in at the San Siro. Since then he has won 2 more and is now a 4 time winner.
6) Javier Zanetti – Inter Milan – 1x winner
An Inter Milan legend who should’ve won more of these in his career. His career started in 1995 but coincedentally he never won Serie A until 2006, before eventually winning the Champions League in 2010, the only time Inter Milan have ever won the modern Champions League.
5) Alessandro Nesta – AC Milan – 2x winner
A winner twice and also a runner up once too, Nesta was a fantastic addition to the AC Milan back line for a long time. He won his two winners medals in 2003 and 2007, while also being a runner up in 2005. For his honours, he’s been instated in the AC Milan Hall of Fame and has won many individual player awards.
4) Roberto Carlos – Real Madrid – 3x winner
Branded as ‘the most offense-minded left-back in the history of the game’, Roberto Carlos goes down as one of the all-time greats for his time at Real Madrid. He won the Champions League magnificently 3 times in 5 years, as Real dominated the European stage.
3) Gerard Pique – Barcelona and Manchester United – 4x winner
Pique has had a fantastic career, but many people forget that, on top of the Champions League titles he’s won at the Nou Camp, he also picked a medal in 2008 as part of the Manchester United squad that beat Chelsea in Moscow. He scored in a 4-0 home win over Dynamo Kyiv in the group stage. At Barca, he’s won the trophy in 2009, 2011 and 2015, starting in each of those finals.
2) Carles Puyol – Barcelona – 3x winner
He may not have as many medals as Pique, but his loyalty to Barcelona is so special that he takes second spot. He won so much with the Catalans, but the 3 European crowns are what he is truly proud of. He wasn’t around for 2015 win against Juventus, but he was involved in fantastic triumphs vs Arsenal in 2006, and Manchester United twice in 2009 and 2011.
1) Paolo Maldini – AC Milan – 5x winner – 3x runner-up
Top of the list of the best Champions League defenders is Paolo Maldini. The career of Paolo Maldini is an incredible one. Yes, we’ve cheated slightly, we’re aware that his first few titles came before the European Cup was re-branded, but he’s a true football legend. He’s also been on the losing end 3 times, but that just proves how many times he’s managed to play in such a prestigious final. He is the greatest AC Milan player of all time and perhaps the best defender to play the game ever in the modern era.