El Centrocampista

Top Ten Real Madrid Players of All Time

As Spain’s most successful side, Real Madrid have seen no shortage of great players in their 110 year history.

Over the next few pages Tom Creasey takes a look at who he thinks are the ten best footballers to don the famous white shirt of Los Merengues…





France has produced some of the most talented midfielders to grace the beautiful game but before Zidane and Platini came Raymond Kopa.

Born in the northern French town of Nœux-les-Mines to Polish immigrants, Raymond Kopaszewski earned his keep as a teenager by pushing coal-laden wagons in a mine.

Spending just three seasons with Los Blancos, Kopa sneaks into this list on account of the sheer dominance he contributed to during his brief spell on the Iberian Peninsula.

Kopa was an integral part of the legendary Real Madrid side of the 1950’s playing alongside Di Stéfano, Rial, Gento and Puskás.

The pinnacle of his career, however, came at the 1958 World Cup when he was recognised as the star of the tournament despite the goalscoring exploits of his teammate Just Fontaine and the emergence of a 17 year-old Brazilian by the name of Pelé.

At just five feet six tall Kopa’s low centre of gravity gave him great balance and agility, allowing him to beat players with his famous dribbling skills.

The tricky playmaker won league titles in 1957 and 1958 and won the European Cup in each of his three years with the side, becoming the first Frenchman to do so in 1957 and he won the Ballon d’Or in 1958.

Kopa returned to Stade de Reims in 1959 where he lifted the French League for the third and fourth times in 1960 and 1962.

Continue to NEXT PLAYER

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  1. Chris Clements

    23 March, 2012 at 18:19

    Great article Tom. You’re brave to lay your cards on the table as everybody will have a different view. I would find space for Zidane and maybe, just maybe Hierro. Oh! and then there is Zamora, and… This is just too difficult!

  2. Ali Khalifa

    23 March, 2012 at 20:04

    Where is Zinedine Zidane? I’d still find space for him on the top 5, this is strange!

  3. FCB1899

    23 March, 2012 at 20:35

    Surely Zinedine Zidane would make the top 3? They are all great choices thought apart from that omission.

  4. halamadrid

    23 March, 2012 at 20:38

    Agree Zizou should be on – what are you reasons for leaving him out? I would also put Hierro in the list.

  5. Pingback: Polish Gazette - Top Ten Real Madrid Players of All Time – El Centrocampista

  6. Tom Creasey

    24 March, 2012 at 14:47

    Thanks guys, yeah the Zidane omission wasn’t taken lightly, I just didn’t think he won enough basically. Hierro was a tough one too.

  7. halamadrid

    27 March, 2012 at 09:30

    Zidane won 1 CL, 1 La Liga, 1 UEFA supercup and 1 World Club Club while at Real Madrid.

    Not sure about some of the other players without looking into it but it’s a big call to leave Zizou out! Very brave!

  8. co4tes

    27 March, 2012 at 09:31

    Where is Thomas Gravesen?

  9. Peter

    21 April, 2012 at 16:28

    But, Where is Hierro? Top 10 Madrid without Hierro, and top 10 Barça without Puyol? Come on man. Another absurd list. Tom please stop making lists. It is not your thing.

    • Tom Creasey

      21 April, 2012 at 17:54

      Puyol didn’t win anything until 2004-05 season when he was 27. Iniesta, for example, won the league in his first season, as did Xavi and Messi.

      You have a right to give your opinion but you don’t have to insult me personally because I didn’t include a player. I don’t get paid to do this and spent a great deal of time researching and writing these articles, most people seem to enjoy them.

  10. Duttdip

    6 January, 2013 at 22:46

    Where is Zizou?

    Soccer is not a game of dry stats.. No player in history is as complete as Zizou, nor as beautiful to watch. He should be there in the top 3.

  11. Name

    4 March, 2013 at 16:26

    Where is david beckham.?

  12. declan

    21 April, 2013 at 07:44

    were is zidane????

  13. El Gran Capitan

    31 July, 2013 at 22:15

    I don´t think Zidane should make the list, because he played only a few years, i dont think he is a Madrid symbol or legend, even though a great player, one of my all time favorites.

    Hierro should be on the list, he is a Madrid legend, won a lot of cups, was a true leader and was in the good and the bad times.

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