From Messi to Pibe: Top 30 South American qualifiers

The official competition of the South American team is back, The 2026 World Cup qualifiers have begun. Brazil and Argentina scored two wins in the first two days, giving the favorites a positive start, Next is Colombia, which adds two commitments. Ecuador defeated Uruguay, which started with -3 points due to FIFA sanctions and therefore zero points.

Now is a good time to look back on the past, without losing sight of the present, in order to compile a ranking of the best players in the history of the South American qualifiers, which this time are starting to break records: Neymar overtakes Pele as Brazil’s top scorer and Lionel Messi and Arturo Vidal scored five goals in qualifying. All these names appear in the As Colombia.

Messi leads two legends

“10” gave the world champion his first victory in qualifying. Scored 3 points with a wonderful free-kick goal against Ecuador at home. and This allowed Messi to equal his friend Luis Suarez as the top scorer in the competition’s history. Each item is worth 29 points. Lionel is averaging 0.47 points per game and did not play any minutes against Bolivia in La Paz.

On the podium of this ranking are two football legends and world champions. They are Pele and Diego Armando Maradona. The previous World Cup qualifiers did not have this kind of full-round confrontation system, and they played less times, so they did not appear in the historical goal list of the qualifiers, but several South American countries performed well on their way to the cup. own talents. international.

Brazil and Uruguay, the countries with the most entries into the top 30

In addition to Pele, the five-time world champion brings four other players to this list, all of whom are in the top ten. Zico is the leading scorer in qualifying, ranking fourth with 78 games for Argentina and 82 games for Spain, followed by two recent stars: Ronaldo and Ronaldinho, pure fantasy. In eighth place is Neymar, Brazil’s new top scorer and the player with the most goals in this jersey heading into the World Cup (13).

Uruguay contributed the same number of players, albeit further down the list. The highest ranked player is Luis Suarez, who is tied with Messi as the top scorer in the qualifying round. Edinson Cavani and Diego Forlan are among the 15 all-time scorers in the competition and we must also add the brilliance of Enzo Francescoli, Participated in qualifying matches for Mexico 86, Italy 90, United States 94 and France 98. Defensive references like Diego Godin, the Uruguayan who played the most minutes in the qualifiers, cannot be ruled out either.

Colombia contributes 4 players to this ranking

Mexico’s Road to 86 marks Pibe Valderrama’s qualifying debut (The first round of the South American play-offs against Paraguay), considering that he also played in Italy 90, the United States 98 and France 98. Captained the 5-0 victory over Argentina at the Memorial Stadium Faustino Asprilla was also there, another Colombian of this generation.

Looking at the current group, the two top scorers of the Colombian national team enter: Falcao Garcia and James Rodriguez, This is the decisive factor in whether the tricolor can enter the 2014 World Cup in Brazil and the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

The best 30 players in the South American qualifiers

  1. Lionel Messi (Argentina)
  2. Bailey (Brazil)
  3. Diego Armando Maradona (Argentina)
  4. Zico (Brazil)
  5. ronaldo (Brazil)
  6. Ronaldinho (Brazil)
  7. Luis Suarez (Uruguay)
  8. Neymar (Brazil)
  9. Carlos Valderrama (Colombia)
  10. Hernan Crespo (Argentina)
  11. Diego Forlan (Uruguay)
  12. Falcao Garcia (Colombia)
  13. Ivan Zamorano (chili)
  14. James Rodriguez (Colombia)
  15. Marcelo Moreno Martins (Bolivia)
  16. Marcelo Salas (chili)
  17. Teofilo Cubilas (Peru)
  18. Marco Echeverri (Bolivia)
  19. Edinson Cavani (Uruguay)
  20. Alexis Sanchez (chili)
  21. Faustino Asprilla (Colombia)
  22. Enzo Francescoli (Uruguay)
  23. Gabriel Batistuta (Argentina)
  24. Jose Luis Chilavert (Paraguay)
  25. Arturo Vidal (chili)
  26. Paul Guerrero (Peru)
  27. Alex Aguinaga (Ecuador)
  28. Diego Godin (Uruguay)
  29. Roque Santa Cruz (Paraguay)
  30. Juan Arango (Venezuela)

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