Ryan Giggs, Paolo Maldini, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Philip Lahm.
All the above would be names one would associate with the title of ‘Most Decorated Player in Football History’*. But none of the players mentioned actually hold that honour. Dani Alves – who some now put in this bracket – has so far won 33 major honours over the course of his career, and will look to add a 34th on Saturday night. That will only put him level with the second most successful player though, Giggs.
However, the player in question has 36 major titles to his name, having won silverware with Ajax, Barcelona, Inter Milan and PSG.
Wait a minute. The player isn’t named above, but they have won titles with Ajax, Barca, Inter and PSG? Are you Zlatan Ibrahimovic in disguise??
To cut a long story short, no it’s not. It is actually Zlatan’s close friend, Brazilian defender Maxwell. The PSG player has amassed 37 major honours in a career arc that has followed the Swede’s very closely. He has also won league titles in nine of his last eleven seasons.
LEGEND: Maxwell is officially the most decorated footballer ever:
??? – 15
??? – 10
??? – 6
??? – 5
??? – 1
37 trophies in his career ?? pic.twitter.com/4YLXWvL1tg
— BetBright (@BetBright) May 28, 2017
Dani Alves, having plundered five medals with cup specialists Sevilla, 23 with all-conquering Barcelona, three with Brazil and now two with Italian domestic powerhouses Juventus, is now looking to draw level with Giggs on 34 trophies.
And another Champions League medal in Cardiff on Saturday night would pull Alves to within three of his compatriot, Maxwell.
Noel Ryan, Pundit Arena
*Major football leagues –