The number 7 shirt in football is usually worn by wingers and second strikers, but it has also been graced by the absolute most famous central strikers to have played the game.
Traditionally, the number 7 has been inseparable from players who love to spill and run in behind resistance safeguards to whip crosses to forward colleagues in the penalty area. In any case, actually, like the game, the number 7 has also developed with time.
Nevertheless, the most skillful player in a team is frequently given the honor of wearing the number 7 pullover. The most legendary players in the game, both active and resigned, have donned this pullover for teams throughout the long term.
On that note, let us have a gander at ten of the best players in the game, in no particular request, who have gotten inseparable from the notable number 7 pullover.
Top 10 Players Ever to Wear Number 7
#1 Cristiano Ronaldo
Cristiano Ronaldo may come up second to Garrincha as far as ability with the ball at his feet but thinking about the player’s sustained greatness and life span for almost two decades. He is the undisputed decision for the best number 7 to have graced the beautiful game.
The Portugal captain, the lone European player to score 100 international goals (just the second player overall to accomplish the feat), has never thought back after getting the notorious pullover from Manchester United’s legendary manager Sir Alex Ferguson in 2003.
Aside from two seasons (one with Sporting Lisbon and the other for Real Madrid), Ronaldo has always worn the number 7 shirt during his club career and large swathes of his international career.
The all-time top-scorer in Real Madrid and Champions League history, who is perhaps the best player to have played the game, was renowned for his elaborate series of step-overs and spilling ability in the left-flank when he initially started.
As his career advanced, Ronaldo later transitioned to middle forward without breaking a sweat, a move that has yielded rich profits as far as goals scored, but his goal-creating ability dwindled. Notwithstanding, his current club Juventus and the Portugal team are probably not going to worry over it.
Manuel Francisco dos Santos, usually known as Garrincha, is arguably perhaps the best dribbler of all time.
The conservative used to blaze down the flanks and bamboozle resistance safeguards with his great array of stunts and bluffs. In the absence of a certain Pele, Garrincha played a vital job in Brazil’s fruitful title protection in the 1962 FIFA World Cup, where he was also the tournament’s leading scorer and Golden Ball victor.
Garrincha, which means ‘little bird’ in Portuguese, spent most of his club career at Botafogo but became more renowned for his formidable partnership with Pele while playing for Brazil.
#3 George Best
George Best is quite possibly the most legendary player throughout football and is viewed as truly outstanding to have graced the game.
Although he donned many different pullovers during his decade-long spell at Old Trafford, the Northern Irishman became interchangeable as one of the club’s best number 7s.
Best, who is probably the best player never to have graced a major international tournament like the Euros or the FIFA World Cup, was renowned for his spilling ability, two-footedness, and his ability to run in behind protectors.
During a sublime club career, the vast majority of which he spent at Manchester United, Best won two league titles, two Super Cups, and a FA Cup and European Champions Club Cup (now called the Champions League).
One of Best’s many records remembers scoring the most goals for a club for a season as a teenager for Manchester United, a record that has since been emulated by just three players in the following five decades.
#4 Bastian Schweinsteiger
However, Bastian Schweinsteiger never wore the number 7 shirt in his club career. The German player became inseparable from this pullover while playing for his national team.
Schweinsteiger isn’t the quintessential number 7 who is predominantly engaged with the attacking third. The 2014 FIFA World Cup champ also does a fair share of the ‘grimy’ work, assisting his safeguard and removing resistance attacks.
Strangely, the Germany international wore the number 31 during his 13 seasons with Bayern Munich, two with Manchester United, and three with the Chicago Bulls in the MLS.
#5 Luis Figo
Luis Figo made the number 7 shirt his own at Sporting Lisbon and then at FC Barcelona as he won back-to-back league and Spanish Cup titles at the club.
Figo then made an acrimonious change to Barcelona’s arch-rivals Real Madrid but kept on discovering accomplishment as a ‘Galactico’ at his new club. Although the Portugal international didn’t wear the number 7 shirt at Madrid, his 56 goals and 93 assists impelled the Bernabeu side to two La Liga titles and a Champions League win.
The then most-capped Portugal player later moved to Inter, where he was handed the number 7 pullover. Figo indeed demonstrated his goal-scoring and goal-creating abilities, along with his set-piece ability, as the Nerazzurri won four sequential league titles among other domestic distinctions.
#6 Eric Cantona
Eric Cantona originally shot to the spotlight with Leeds United in the late spring of 1992 when he scored nine goals as his side pipped Manchester United to win their first league title in quite a while.
Cantona immediately endeared himself to the Leeds faithful despite his unconventionality and acquired the number 7 pullover regardless of a languid trip with France at Euro’ 92.
In any case, with Leeds’ title protection and his relationship with the manager spectacularly collapsing in the inaugural Premier League season, Manchester United came calling for Cantona, and there would be no thinking back.
Like he did at Elland Road, Cantona became a group favorite at Old Trafford as he scored fabulous goals galore and won prizes aplenty.
The Frenchman’s 61 goals and 81 assists in four-and-a-half seasons at Manchester United conveyed a rich haul of four Premier League prizes, five Super Cups, and two FA Cup titles.
#7 David Beckham
David Beckham, renowned for his intersection ability from the traditional and especially for his dead-ball ability, was quite possibly the most notorious number 7s throughout the entire existence of the game.
Beckham initially acquired the number at the young age of 21 while at Manchester United after the shirt’s past occupier, Eric Cantona left the club.
The Englishman, who didn’t wear the number 7 during his four years at Real Madrid, scored 127 goals and assisted 202 others during a fruitful club career for six different teams.
Beckham scored 65 free-kicks during his nearly two-decade career for club and country, a tally that incorporates 29 for Manchester United and 14 for Real Madrid.
#8 Kevin Keegan
Kevin Keegan is perhaps the most decorated player throughout the entire existence of Liverpool.
During his six-season stretch at Anfield from 1971 to 1977, Keegan wore the notorious number 7 pullover in all but one season (1974-75).
Because of his ability front and center, the player was transitioned from a right-midfielder to a central striker by legendary Liverpool manager Bill Shankly. The move yielded rich profits as Keegan summoned 90 goals and 56 assists in all contests, with the English giants lifting three league titles, as many titles in Europe and one in the FA Cup.
#9 Franck Ribery
Franck Ribery arrived at Bayern Munich in the late spring of 2007 and acquired the club’s number 7 pullover from the resigning Mehmet Scholl.
Not every person was persuaded by their arrival in Bavaria. Still, Ribery managed to endear himself to the Bayern faithful by scoring in his second Bundesliga game, and there would be no thinking back from that point.
Ribery had huge boots to fill but made a decent start to life in Germany. He scored 11 goals and assisted eight others as Bayern won the league and Cup double, in the process turning out to be simply the second-historically speaking outsider to win Germany’s Player of the Year award. Notwithstanding, the Frenchman was barely beginning.
A year later, Ribery was joined by Arjen Robben, and the pair – nicknamed Robbery – would wreak havoc down the flanks, with Ribery on the left and Robben on the right. The two wingers pushed Bayern to arguably their most dominating spells in Germany and abroad.
During his 12-season spell in Bavaria, Ribery was plagued by wounds but scored 124 goals and assisted 182 more as he surpassed Hasan Salihamidzic to become the club’s most-capped unfamiliar player.
Ribery finished his Bayern stretch with 23 titles – a record nine of them being Bundesliga wins – to scratch his name into Bayern’s record books before joining Fiorentina at the start of last season.
Real Madrid’s Raul Gonzalez, all the more normally known exclusively by his first name, is quite possibly the most famous number 7s in the club’s renowned history and the actual game.
Raul, who came through the Madrid ranks, acquired the famed Real Madrid number 7 shirt from the active Emilio Butragueno in 1995 at 17 and never thought back.
During a luxuriously fruitful decade-and-a-half-long stretch at the Bernabeu, Raul scored goals galore, 323 of them to be exact, as Real Madrid’s latest number 7 became the club’s all-time top-scorer before being usurped by his replacement Cristiano Ronaldo.
The Spain international was at his prolific best in the 2000-01 season as his 32 goals in all rivalries helped Real Madrid win La Liga and reach the Champions League semi-finals. Raul left for Schalke in 2010 after winning six league prizes and three Champions League titles.
The player later returned to Madrid in a managerial capacity and conveyed the club’s first UEFA Youth League title.