Date: 1st February 2021 at 5:15pm
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The Italian national football team is one of the most successful in world football, having won four World Cups and the European Championship, while Italian clubs such as AC Milan, Inter Milan, and Juventus have done their country proud on the European club scene. Italy is a country where many great players have hailed from, so I thought it would be a fantastic idea to take a look at some of the best players to have hailed from this football mad country.

Sandro Mazzola

Mazzola is without doubt one of the best Italian footballers ever and is a legend for Inter Milan fans. He spent his whole career at Inter and was part of the team that dominated the Serie A from 1960 until 1967. He was a versatile player who was able to play in a number of different attacking positions and he won his first Scudetto in 1963. He would go on to help Inter win 3 more Serie A titles, 2 European Cups, and 2 Intercontinental Cups. He was also part of the Italian team that lifted the European Championship in 1968. He helped Italy make it to the final of the 1970 World Cup, but they lost to Brazil. Overall, he played 565 matches for Inter and scored 158 goals.

Gianluigi Buffon

He is definitely one of the best keepers ever, and anyone who says otherwise does not know what they are talking about. He holds the record for the most appearances in the Serie A, having played 649 matches. He has also kept 296 clean sheets in the Serie A, which is a remarkable record. Buffon started his remarkable career at Parma, where he helped them to win the UEFA Cup and the Coppa Italia. He was then sold to Juventus for €52 million, which just so happened to be the highest transfer fee for a keeper at the time. He went on to win 10 Scudettos with Juve and 4 Coppa Italia titles. He played in 3 Champions League finals with Juventus, but they lost them all. He made 176 appearances for the Italian national team and helped them pick up the World Cup title in 2006.

As a goalkeeper myself, I must admit that Buffon is a hero to me. I can honestly say that I do not think I have ever seen a keeper as good as him. I am not Italian, but I was supporting Italy at the 2006 World Cup simply because Buffon was playing for them. Apart from wanting to see his amazing keeping skills, I had another reason to keep an eye on Italy during that tournament and this was that I had placed a pre-tournament bet on Buffon to pick up the Golden Glove. I went on to win that bet thanks to the fact that he kept 5 clean sheets from 7 matches. My friend placed the same bet but did not win as much as me since he does not care for odds comparison sites. I currently make use of https://www.mybettingsite.uk/ and it has made my gambling experience better since I now know where to find the best odds.

Giacinto Facchetti

Facchetti’s pace, athelticism, physicallity, and stamina alongside his great technical skills are what makes him one of Italy’s finest footballers. He is another player who spent his whole career at Inter, and during his time there you would be hard pushed to find a player who could compete with him in his favored position. Although he was a left-back, he enjoyed getting forward and had the ability to take ferocious shots with either feet. Just like Mazzola, he was part of the Grande Inter team of the 1960s that picked up 4 Serie A titles and 2 European Cups. He played 476 matches for Inter and scored 59 goals, which is plenty for a defender. He played 95 games for his country, 70 of which he was the captain. He helped Italy win the Euros in 1968 and reach the final of the 1970 World Cup. Unfortunately, he passed away in 2006 at just 64 years of age.

Francesco Totti

Totti, known as the King of Rome, was undoubtedly one of the best strikers of the modern game. He spent his whole career at Roma, where he scored 250 goals in 618 matches, making him the second most prolific striker in the history of the Serie A. During his time at Roma, he helped them to win one Serie A title, 2 Supercoppa Italiana, and 2 Coppa Italia titles. He was an extremely gifted player who was able to dribble by the best defenders with ease and he could play as either a striker or a playmaker, meaning he created plenty of goals as well. He was capped 58 times for Italy and was part of the squad that lifted the World Cup trophy in 2006.

Alessandro Del Piero

Del Piero played for Juventus for almost 20 years and was one of the most technically gifted footballers that you will ever see on a football pitch. He was a complete beast when it came to scoring goals from penalties or free kicks, having scored 106 of them. During his time at Juventus, he won 6 Serie A titles, 1 Champions League trophy, 1 UEFA Super Cup, and 4 Supercoppa Italiana. He is Juve’s highest ever scorer with 290 goals in 705 matches, with 188 of these being scored in the Serie A. As a result, he is also the 8th highest scorer in Serie A history. He was capped 91 times by Italy and was a major part of the Italian team that won the World Cup in 2006.

Paolo Maldini

Maldini was a defender that had every trait that a defender needs to have. He played professional football for 25 years and spent all of his career playing for AC Milan. During his time at Milan, he won the Serie A 7 times, the Champions League 5 times, and 1 Coppa Italia. He played in 8 Champions League finals, which is a record. Other great footballers such as Ronaldo and Ronaldinho have declared that he was the best defender they played against. This was because he was strong, rarely missed a tackle, and was technically gifted too. To top it off, he was a great crosser and passer of the ball. He was capped 126 times by Italy, but never won a trophy – they came second at the 2000 European Championship.

Roberto Baggio

During his career he played for Milan, Juventus, and Inter and is considered by many to be one of the best strikers that the Serie A has ever seen. In fact, he is regarded as one of the best footballers ever. During his time at Juventus, he won the Serie A, UEFA Cup, and the Coppa Italia, while at Milan he also won the Serie A. Baggio was a playmaker that had the ability to dribble by multiple defenders and he could also take a mean free kick. In 490 club matches, he scored an impressive 220 goals. He was capped 56 times for Italy, scoring 27 times. He never won an international trophy, but they did finish as runners up in the 1994 World Cup.