Ranked! Who are the best players in the world in every position?

Best players in the world
(Image credit: Future)

Who are the best players in the world in every position? It's a question that dominates TV studios, radio phone-ins, pub gardens, school classrooms and offices all over the globe. Football fans love debating whether X player is better than Y, and at FFT, we're no different. 

Our expert writers regularly put together lists of the world's best players in every position, with a different position list published on the website every Friday. Here, you can find each of those, including info on when they were last updated. 

The lists are compiled with current form and talent in mind, so a great player in terrible form/shape may not make the list this time. 

And with the World Cup 2022 just around the corner, it's good to know who you should be keeping an eye on...

Which positions are included?

While there are dozens of specific positions on a football pitch in the modern game – from sweeper 'keepers to false nines – and we could easily make a list for every single type of player, we've decided to simplify things. Therefore, the following positions are covered by our weekly lists:

  • Goalkeepers
  • Right-backs
  • Centre-backs
  • Left-backs
  • Defensive midfielders
  • Attacking midfielders
  • Playmakers
  • Right-wingers
  • Left-wingers
  • Wingers
  • Strikers

Yes, we know "Playmaker" isn't an actual position, but given different teams rely on different positions to create the bulk of their team's chances (take Liverpool's full-backs, for example) it's a list we thought would be interesting, too. 

We also made the decision to split midfielders into defensive and attacking types. It's not easy comparing an N'Golo Kante with a Kevin De Bruyne, yet each are vital to their team's successes and they operate in similar areas. 

As well as individual categories for right- and left-wingers, we have a standalone wingers list, with a combination of both of the side-specific lists.

The best players in the world in every position lists

The 10 best goalkeepers in the world right now

The 10 best right-backs in the world right now

The 10 best centre-backs in the world right now

The 10 best left-backs in the world right now

The 10 best defensive midfielders in the world

The 10 best right-wingers in the world right now

The 10 best left-wingers in the world right now

The 10 best wingers in the world right now

The 10 best playmakers on the planet right now

The 10 best strikers in the world right now

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Ed McCambridge
Staff Writer

Ed is a staff writer at FourFourTwo, working across the magazine and website. A German speaker, he’s been working as a football reporter in Berlin since 2015, predominantly covering the Bundesliga and Germany's national team. Favourite FFT features include an exclusive interview with Jude Bellingham following the youngster’s move to Borussia Dortmund in 2020, a history of the Berlin Derby since the fall of the Wall and a celebration of Kevin Keegan’s playing career.