The UEFA Champions League is Europe's elite premier competition. It brings the best of European clubs to fight for the prestigious trophy. The joy of winning it makes players consider the possibility of playing in the competition when making new moves. With the aim of winning it in mind, some players have had to play many Champions League matches in their career.
As said earlier, some players who aim to play usually move to clubs that have either qualified or have the chance of qualifying. It is their dream to play and win it. With the competition happening ever season, players in to European clubs have played the most number of matches.
In this article, we shall take a look at the players who have the most appearances in the history of the competition. Recall that it is the European Cup that was later rebranded into the UEFA Champions League. Cristiano Ronaldo is the all-time goalscorer with 136 goals scored, while Real Madrid is the all-time the winners with 13 triumphs.
Speaking of the record for appearances, here are the 10 players with the most appearances in the competition's history.
10. Thomas Müller.
Although, Thomas Müller has made the same number of appearances in the Champions League as Clarence Seedorf, he is occupying the 10th spot here because he is still an active player. With Bayern Munich in this year's competition, Muller will surpass this figure if he features in the Bavarians next Champions League game in the group stage.
At the moment though, both the German and the AC Milan legend have made a total 125 appearances in the competition respectively. The possibility of Muller to hold the spot outrightly this month means he is taking the spot in this article.
9. Sergio Ramos.
With 4 Champions League winners medals, Ramos is one of the most successful players in the competition. He has played his best football at Real Madrid, making 129 appearances across many seasons in the Champions League.
8. Andreas Iniesta.
Andreas Iniesta is one of the best midfielders in the history of football. The Spanish international played all of his club football with Barcelona, where he won multiple Champions League titles. Altogether, Iniesta played a total of 130 matches in the Champions League before he retired as a professional.
7. Karim Benzema.
Like Thomas Müller, Karim Benzema is still an active player with Real Madrid. At the moment, he has made 131 appearances in the competition. We can conclude that he will add more Appearances this season and possibly a few other seasons to come to improve his tally.
6. Ryan Giggs.
Legendary Manchester United player Ryan Giggs is next on the list. In the history of the Champions League, Giggs has played 141 matches. He is a two-time winner of the prestigious trophy with Manchester United, where he played the whole of his professional football.
Legendary Real Madrid player who once held the record for both goals and appearances, Raúl, comes next. He occupies the 5th spot at the moment, haven played a total of 142 matches. As a retired player, he won't be able to add to this tally.
4. Xavi Hernandez.
Former Barcelona midfield genius Xavi made 151 appearances before his retirement from the game. A one club like Giggs, Iniesta, he's an all-time great in the competition. He has the same appearances so far with the next player on the list.
3. Lionel Messi.
Lionel Messi is perhaps the greatest player in the history of football. While there is an ongoing debate about that, his name coming as high as this in such a list as this is evidence that he is such a great player.
Messi has recently moved to Paris St Germain in France, where he has made 1 appearance. However, Messi has 150 while at Barcelona, making is total tally to be 151. He still has a long way to go if he wants to match the player in second, but he may never be able to hold this record outrightly before he retires.
2. Iker Casillas.
Iker Casillas is the only goalkeeper to appear on this list. This make him the goalkeeper with the highest appearances in Champions League history.
In fact, Casillas was only recently displaced from the top spot on this list. Before now, he held the record for the highest appearances in the Champions League with 177 matches played in. Since he has retired from the game, he can only hold on to this position for now.
1. Cristiano Ronaldo.
OK, it is effortless to predict that in any list that Messi isn't top, it is most likely that Ronaldo will. Cristiano Ronaldo can be nicknamed “Mr Champions League”. Ronaldo is the all-time top scorer, the player with most final appearances with 6, a five-time winner with 5 triumphs and the highest appearance make with 178 games played in.
As it stands, Ronaldo will definitely continue to improve this number till he retires. While Messi will give him a run for his money, I think Ronaldo will hold on by increase his tally. It will take some extraordinary for a player to break his record by the time he retires.
However, with Messi being two years younger than the Portuguese, he has a chance at breaking Ronaldo's tally before his retirement.
Do you think he can? Have your say. Kingly share, and don't forget to follow “Amazingboi” for the best updates.
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