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Ranking the top 5 midfielders of the 21st century

Luka Modric is one of the top midfielders of the 21st century.
Luka Modric is one of the top midfielders of the 21st century.
Gautham Unni
ANALYST

Football fans have been lucky to see some of the best players since the turn of the century. In an era boasting some of the best players of all time, fans truly have had an embarrassment of riches.

While each position on the football field deserves its own praise, it can be argued that midfield is the area that makes a team tick. We have seen several types of midfielders: registas, box-to-box midfielders, defensive midfielders and so on.

On that note, let's take a look at the top five midfielders of the 21st century.


#5 Sergio Busquets (Barcelona, Spain)

Sergio Busquets
Sergio Busquets

Sergio Busquets has been a mainstay in midfield for both Spain and Barcelona.

In a career spanning over 12 years, Busquets rose to fame with his unorthodox yet supremely effective playing style. After being handed the reins in midfield at the tender age of 20, Busquets hit the ground running.

Busquets has an unbelievable record for club and country, winning every major trophy he has ever competed in. With Barcelona, Busquets has won a mammoth eight La Liga titles. He also has seven Copa del Rey wins to his name, as well as six Supercoppa titles.

Sergio Busquets also won the UEFA Champions League thrice with Barcelona - 2009, 2011, 2015 - the ones in 2009 and 2015 being part of continental trebles. Often regarded as a role model by his younger peers, Busquets is known for stamping his authority on games, thanks to his quick passing and tactical fouls at times.

With Spain, Busquets was part of the golden generation that won two UEFA European Championships either side of a FIFA World Cup triumph. Having played in many major tournaments, Busquets has been an integral part of the tiki-taka setup that Spain embodied.


#4 Toni Kroos (Real Madrid, Germany)

Toni Kroos
Toni Kroos

Toni Kroos is one of the best German players to have played the game.

Making his senior debut in 2007, Kroos has been a regular on the football scene for almost 14 years now. Renowned for his inch-perfect passes and eye for goal, Kroos often takes it upon himself to pull strings from midfield.

After spending seven years with Bayern Munich, he joined Real Madrid in 2014. Kroos has had an incredibly successful career and will certainly go down as a club legend at both European giants.

Kroos has a vast array of trophies in his cabinet. He has won league titles in Spain and Germany five times besides winning four domestic cups. He has also won the prestigious UEFA Champions League with both clubs, winning it with Bayern in 2013 and doing a three-peat with Real Madrid (2016 to 2018).

Also a regular with Germany, Kroos was a key figure in Die Mannschaft's FIFA World Cup-winning run in 2014 and is one of the best midfielders of his generation.

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Edited by Bhargav
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