FIFA 100

The FIFA 100 is a list of the world-renowned Brazilian striker Pelé's choice of the "greatest living footballers". Unveiled on 4 March 2004 at a gala ceremony in London, England, the FIFA 100 marked part of the celebrations of the 100th anniversary of the foundation of the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), the international governing body of football.

Pelé in 2008

The figure 100 refers to the 100th anniversary of FIFA and not the number of players listed, which is actually 125; Pelé had been asked to select 50 active players and 50 retired players, for a total of 100 players, but found it too difficult to limit the number of former players to just 50.[1] The list contains 123 professional male and 2 female players. At the time the FIFA 100 was selected, 50 of the players were still active, with the remaining 75 retired from the game.


Some football observers have questioned the selection methodology of the list. David Mellor, politician turned football pundit, wrote in his column in the Evening Standard that he felt the selections were politically motivated rather than made on purely footballing grounds.[2] He suggested that the selections looked as if they came from the pen of Sepp Blatter rather than Pelé. As evidence for this, Mellor noted the wide geographical spread of the selected players: a true selection would be more heavily biased to South America and Europe, he argued. Such assertions were also forwarded by BBC columnist Tim Vickery.[3]

One of Pelé's old teammates, the former Brazil midfielder Gérson, reacted to his omission from the FIFA 100 by tearing up a copy of the list on a Brazilian television programme. Marco van Basten and Uwe Seeler refused to take part in the project on a point of principle.[4]


Following is the list of the "FIFA 100" greatest living footballers as nominated by Pelé.[5][6]

  • Players active at the time of announcement are marked by (*).


Player Position Date of Birth
Gabriel Batistuta* FW 1969-02-01
Hernán Crespo* FW 1975-07-05
Alfredo Di Stéfano FW 1926-07-04
Mario Kempes FW 1954-07-15
Diego Maradona FW/MF 1960-10-30
Daniel Passarella DF 1953-05-25
Javier Saviola* FW 1981-12-11
Omar Sívori FW 1935-10-02
Juan Sebastián Verón* MF 1975-03-09
Javier Zanetti* DF/MF 1973-08-10


Player Pos. DoB
Jan Ceulemans MF 1957-02-28
Jean-Marie Pfaff GK 1953-12-04
Franky Van der Elst MF 1961-04-30


Player Pos. DoB
Carlos Alberto DF 1944-07-17
Cafu* DF 1970-06-07
Falcão MF 1953-10-16
Pelé FW 1940-10-23
Júnior MF 1954-06-29
Rivaldo* MF 1972-04-19
Rivelino MF 1946-01-01
Roberto Carlos* DF 1973-04-10
Romário* FW 1966-01-29
Ronaldinho* MF/FW 1980-03-21
Ronaldo* FW 1976-09-18
Djalma Santos DF 1929-02-27
Nílton Santos DF 1925-05-16
Sócrates MF 1954-02-19
Zico MF/FW 1953-03-03


Player Pos. DoB
Hristo Stoichkov FW 1966-02-08


Player Pos. DoB
Roger Milla FW 1952-05-20


Player Pos. DoB
Elías Figueroa DF 1946-10-25
Iván Zamorano FW 1967-01-18


Player Pos. DoB
Carlos Valderrama MF 1961-09-02


Player Pos. DoB
Davor Šuker FW 1968-01-01

  Czech Republic

Player Pos. DoB
Josef Masopust MF 1931-02-09
Pavel Nedvěd* MF 1972-08-30


Player Pos. DoB
Brian Laudrup FW 1969-02-22
Michael Laudrup MF 1964-06-15
Peter Schmeichel GK 1963-11-18


Player Pos. DoB
Gordon Banks GK 1937-12-30
David Beckham* MF 1975-05-02
Bobby Charlton MF 1937-10-11
Kevin Keegan FW 1951-02-14
Gary Lineker FW 1960-11-30
Michael Owen* FW 1979-12-14
Alan Shearer* FW 1970-08-13


Player Pos. DoB
Eric Cantona FW 1966-05-24
Marcel Desailly* DF 1968-09-07
Didier Deschamps MF 1968-10-15
Just Fontaine FW 1933-08-18
Thierry Henry* FW 1977-08-17
Raymond Kopa MF 1931-10-31
Jean-Pierre Papin FW 1963-11-05
Robert Pires* MF 1973-10-29
Michel Platini MF 1955-06-21
Lilian Thuram* DF 1972-01-01
Marius Trésor DF 1950-01-15
David Trezeguet* FW 1977-10-15
Patrick Vieira* MF 1976-06-23
Zinedine Zidane* MF 1972-06-23


Player Pos. DoB
Michael Ballack* MF 1976-09-26
Franz Beckenbauer SW 1945-09-11
Paul Breitner MF/DF 1951-09-05
Oliver Kahn* GK 1969-06-15
Jürgen Klinsmann FW 1964-07-30
Sepp Maier GK 1944-02-28
Lothar Matthäus MF/SW 1961-03-21
Gerd Müller FW 1945-11-03
Karl-Heinz Rummenigge FW 1955-09-25
Uwe Seeler FW 1936-11-05


Player Pos. DoB
Abédi Pelé FW 1964-11-05


Player Pos. DoB
Ferenc Puskás FW 1927-04-02


Player Pos. DoB
Roberto Baggio* FW/MF 1967-02-18
Franco Baresi DF/SW 1960-05-08
Giuseppe Bergomi DF 1963-12-22
Giampiero Boniperti FW 1928-07-04
Gianluigi Buffon* GK 1978-01-28
Alessandro Del Piero* FW 1974-11-09
Giacinto Facchetti DF 1942-07-18
Paolo Maldini* DF 1968-06-26
Alessandro Nesta* DF 1976-03-19
Gianni Rivera MF 1943-08-18
Paolo Rossi FW 1956-09-23
Francesco Totti* FW/MF 1976-09-27
Christian Vieri* FW 1973-07-12
Dino Zoff GK 1942-02-28


Player Pos. DoB
Hidetoshi Nakata* MF 1977-01-22


Player Pos. DoB
George Weah FW 1966-10-01


Player Pos. DoB
Hugo Sánchez FW 1958-07-11


Player Pos. DoB
Marco van Basten FW 1964-10-31
Dennis Bergkamp* FW 1969-05-10
Johan Cruyff FW 1947-04-25
Edgar Davids* MF 1973-03-13
Ruud Gullit MF 1962-09-01
René van de Kerkhof MF 1951-09-16
Willy van de Kerkhof MF 1951-09-16
Patrick Kluivert* FW 1976-07-01
Johan Neeskens MF 1951-09-15
Ruud van Nistelrooy* FW 1976-07-01
Rob Rensenbrink FW 1947-07-03
Frank Rijkaard MF/DF 1962-09-30
Clarence Seedorf* MF 1976-04-01


Player Pos. DoB
Jay-Jay Okocha* MF 1973-08-14

  Northern Ireland

Player Pos. DoB
George Best MF 1946-05-22


Player Pos. DoB
Romerito FW 1960-08-28


Player Pos. DoB
Teófilo Cubillas FW 1949-03-08


Player Pos. DoB
Zbigniew Boniek MF 1956-03-03


Player Pos. DoB
Eusébio FW 1942-01-25
Luís Figo* MF 1972-11-04
Rui Costa* MF 1972-03-29

  Republic of Ireland

Player Pos. DoB
Roy Keane* MF 1971-08-10


Player Pos. DoB
Gheorghe Hagi MF 1965-02-05


Player Pos. DoB
Rinat Dasayev GK 1957-06-13


Player Pos. DoB
Kenny Dalglish FW 1951-03-04


Player Pos. DoB
El Hadji Diouf* FW 1981-01-15

  South Korea

Player Pos. DoB
Hong Myung-bo* DF 1969-02-12


Player Pos. DoB
Emilio Butragueño FW 1963-07-22
Luis Enrique* MF 1970-05-08
Raúl* FW 1977-06-27


Player Pos. DoB
Rüştü Reçber* GK 1973-05-10
Emre Belözoğlu* MF 1980-07-09


Player Pos. DoB
Andriy Shevchenko* FW 1976-09-29

  United States

Player Pos. DoB
Michelle Akers MF/FW 1966-02-01
Mia Hamm* FW 1972-03-17


Player Pos. DoB
Enzo Francescoli FW/MF 1961-11-12

See also


  1. ^ "Fifa names greatest list". BBC. 4 March 2004. Retrieved 30 April 2007.
  2. ^ Mellor, David (5 March 2004). "Sing up for Ken, a true Blues man". Evening Standard Ltd. p. 77.
  3. ^ Vickery, Tim (8 March 2004). "Pele pays price for popularity". BBC. Retrieved 30 April 2007.
  4. ^ Davies, Christopher (4 March 2004). "Pele open to ridicule over top hundred". The Daily Telegraph. UK. Retrieved 10 February 2008.
  5. ^ "FIFA 100". Best Football Players Ever.
  6. ^ "The Fifa 100". The Guardian. 4 March 2004.

External links