In 1965 these players were plying their trade. Ferenc Puskas, Garrincha, Pele, Bobby Charlton, George Best, Franz Beckenbauer, Eusebio, Johan Cruyff, Alfredo Di Stefano and Gerd Muller. With more than some arguments, from Argentines especially, this could be considered an all time top 10 list. Surely this was the golden age of football, talent wise? Surely we are also heading into another such era?
The 60's are back in football terms. We can only hope they come back musical wise.
Recently I have began to notice more and more extremely talented young players. Young players whose respective groupies all believe will become ‘ the next big thing’. The thing is you can make an argument for all of them. Their is no one stand out player. Tens of great players all emerging at once. Seems similar to the 60's to me.
Lets look at some players who are well extablished, but young enough to be at their peak in 6 years or so. Ronaldo, Rooney, Messi, Silva, Fabregas, Nasri, Benzema, Pato, Dos Santos, Nani, Sergio Aguero, Theo Walcott, Anderson, Casillias (He's a keeper), Sergio Ramos, Micah Richards and a couple more. Immediately we can see the competion for ‘best player’ status is much better than even a couple of years ago. In 2000, who would you say will be the best players in 2008. Michael Owen, Joe Cole and Steven Gerrard were prominently talked of in England. Ronaldinho had a brilliant Copa America and was thought of highly. Hugo Viana of Portugal was arguably the brightest prospect. The list begins to thin.
Today's best players developed late, like Andrea Pirlo, or are young and listed above, like the young players I listed above. The very fact that the best players are young show that 21st Century training methods make a better player. These methods have brought out even younger, less known players who look like superstars. Jose Baxter, Fran Merida, Carlos Vela, Jack Wilshire, Ever Banega, Giovinco, Toni Kross, Fabio da Silva and John Bostock. Even throw in the odd youtube viral wunderkid.
To me it is clear that football is about to get better and better. The talent pool will force lesser teams to get better players. Parity will increase. Newcastle will win the Champions League!!! Well maybe not that drastic. All the past great goals will be forgotten about as more talented players score more breathtaking goals. Passes will be sharper. The game quicker, more popular. More money. More money for training youths. Better players, Ect.