Tuesday, 13 August 2019

Top players on the planet - including Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Raheem Sterling (and one vote for Thomas Muller).

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo once again confirmed themselves as gods among mere mortals last season, but Virgil van Dijk arguably elevated himself onto Mount Olympus too with his defensive displays.

The term 'world class' is used in connection with many players, but which of those would join the three named above in a first-choice world XI?

At the start of the new season, Sportsmail's team of reporters have picked their XIs, based on which 11 players would make the best team in the world right now.

It is no easy task - cramming so much talent into just 11 spots means either picking an unbalanced side or leaving out some big names. Maybe even one of the titans named above. Surely not though... right? 
 


 
IAN LADYMAN 
(4-2-3-1) Ederson; De Sciglio, Van Dijk, De Ligt, Alba; Busquets, Kroos; Sterling, Messi, Hazard; Ronaldo
The hardest decisions to make here related to the full-backs. Where have all the world class right-backs gone? In the end I have plumped for two defenders who know what it's like to win things with Juventus and Barcelona. 
The central defensive partnership is exciting, the best in the world with a younger model who just seems to get better with every game he plays. 
Ahead of the back four, I still believe Sergio Busquets has what it takes to provide the four stellar players in attack with the security to go do what they do best. Kroos can probe forwards a little knowing that Busquets will keep the back door closed while the front four will need no explanation. 
It feels weird to leave Mo Salah out. Let's say he would make a decent substitute. 




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