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5 best footballers never to have won any of Europe's top leagues

Sourya C
Modified 21 Sep 2020, 22:42 IST

#3 Fernando Torres

Fernando Torres.
Fernando Torres.

Is Fernando Torres the most decorated footballer in history never to have won a league title?

The once prolific striker, who has won the Europa League, the Champions League, the European Championships and the World Cup, never once won a league title. It is strange but true. His spells at Liverpool and Atletico Madrid were both rife with goals but a league trophy was conspicuous by its absence.

Torres' disastrous stint in Chelsea did get him a Champions League winners' medal but again, no league title. Indeed, Chelsea won the league in the season before the Spanish footballer joined the club and then right after he left! Griezmann will be hoping not to follow suit.

#2 Steven Gerrard

Steven Gerrard in action for Liverpool.
Steven Gerrard in action for Liverpool.

If only he had stayed on his feet. One of Liverpool's greatest ever footballers and eternal icons won the Champions League among various other laurels for the club, except for the Premier League.

Gerrard played more than 700 times for the club and was one of the world's most elite and complete midfielders who had everything - skills, passing range and shooting prowess - one could dream of. He didn't have one thing, though: a league winner's medal.

It could have all been different had Gerrard not slipped dramatically to put Demba Ba through on goal in a Premier League game in 2014 when Liverpool led the league. Chelsea were second and needed to win in Anfield that day.


Gerrard's slip set the London club on their way to the crown (ironically,the one that Torres missed out on) and ensured that the English footballer would end his career as one of the all-time greats never to have won a league title.

#1 Gary Lineker

Gary Lineker.
Gary Lineker.

Gary Lineker was probably destined to win more individual awards than team trophies. Like Signori, he won the Golden Boot in the English League thrice.

Lineker was the top scorer in the 1986 FIFA World Cup for England and came second in the Ballon'd'Or. He was one of the best strikers in the world and remains one of the all-time greatest strikers of the game.

Yet, Lineker's only league triumph was in the second division with Leicester City. He did win the FA Cup, the Copa del Rey and the Cup Winners' Cup but, despite playing for a champion Everton, and later for Barcelona, both of whom won the league, Lineker was never a part of the teams that actually won the league titles.

Lineker is possibly the most prominent member of that ilk of great footballers who never won a top league title.


Note: Juan Mata and Marco Reus are two great modern footballers never to have won a league title but have not been included because they are still active.

Honourable mentions

Daniele De Rossi, Socrates, Stanley Matthews, Gordon Banks, Bobby Moore, Paul Mcgrath, Antonio Di Natale, Bernd Schneider, Matt Le Tissier.

Published 21 Sep 2020, 22:42 IST
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