Since the birth of "the beautiful game," disputes of tactics, teams, and managers have repeatedly characterized the intensity and excitement of the sport.
An even more ferocious and complex debate has been the one about the best, most talented, and gifted player this world has to offer.
Through time, the finest players are spoken about in the media only with a calm demeanour, as if these still remain enigmas to the people and the participants of the footballing world.
Nowadays, only few will be mentioned in the debate amongst the elite, and even fewer will be mentioned when conversing about the best ever seen.
From the farthest outskirts of the world, Pelé will forever be mentioned in this debate. Three World Cup-winning medals and over 1,200 goals have not since been topped by anyone.
On what seems to be second place, Diego Armando Maradona comes in. He will be remembered in all eternity for his destroying performance against England in the World Cup of '86, where he literally ripped the England defence to pieces single-"handedly."
His second goal of that game still stands as the most memorable goal ever scored in the World Cup finals, and it still remains doubtful if that is ever to be changed.
From a personal and new era perspective, the French magician Zinedine Zidane comes in at third place.
His mesmerizing skill and determination made him the most complete player of the last 20 years. With two goals in the World Cup of '98, he stands still amongst the best players ever to grace this earth.
Honorable mentions go to Ronaldo, Ryan Giggs, George Best, Johann Cruyff, Marco van Basten, Michael Laudrup, Michel Platini, Kenny Dalglish, and Sir Bobby Charlton.
When the talk of the present best player in the world begins, usually only two or three are spoken of in the same breath.
Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, and Ricardo Kaká: These three players are undoubtedly the most gifted and talented players currently to play football. None of these players have seen the heights of Ronaldinho, yet seen as his form is not worth mentioning, I won't.
Also, from a personal perspective, a player of immense talent, though yet to be fully utilized, is Wayne Rooney.
Of the three players, it is fairly easy to establish that, whilst his talent may be weaker than that of Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo is the most complete footballer of the three.
He has a big and strong physique, takes fabulous free kicks, possesses one of the best headers in Europe, and scores 30-plus goals a season. He also plays on both wings equally well and is a deadly striker when put up front.
This proves that a player of less natural talent can become a better, or at least a more complete, footballer than one of bigger talent.
Therefore, I will put talent aside and focus on efficiency, determination, and importance. The one player that is all of these things, even more so than Cristiano Ronaldo, is Liverpool's own Steven Gerrard.
Victim of multiple injuries in his first years at Anfield, Steven has certainly bounced back, becoming captain of the club he and his family has adored for years.
He stands among the most respectable footballing characters of the present day and sees honour in playing for the same club for the whole of his career.
Not only this, he is the most complete and therefore best player in the world.
With the most fantastic right foot ever to be seen in English football (sorry David Beckham, you should have scored more), his team thrives on his emotion and understanding of their club and its history.
He is on top of his game; a personal record of 24 goals in all competitions speaks for itself.
He would, of course, see and feel greater recognition if he won a World or European cup, yet his profile quickly rose when winning the Champions League in 2005.
He was also illegally robbed for the Ballon d'Or in 2005, seen as the prize is based on what a player has achieved. Yet once again, European journalists continue their bias towards England.
So what do you think?
Is Steven Gerrard the world's best or merely just good? Have your say.
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