Sunday, February 24, 2019

Atletico Madrid All-Time Team for Spanish players

Koke and Gabi

Please also see my All-Time World Cup Team Index.

Real MadridBarcelonaValencia,
Atletico MadridSevillaAtletic Bilbao, 
Deportivo La Coruna  Real Sociedad,
Real BetisReal ZaragozaEspanyol
Atletico Madrid All-Time Team for Foreign Players
Spain with Real Madrid and Barcelona 

This is my selection of a 25 member all-time team for Atletico Madrid's Spanish players.  The number 25 was chosen because it is the official squad size for the Champions' League.

Atletico Madrid is the third best team in Spain after Real Madrid and Barcelona. They were runner-ups at the European Cup three times, won a singe Cup Winners' Cup and two Europa League.  In 1995-1996, they also won the Double(La Liga and Copa del Rey).
Feliciano Rivilla and Isacio Calleja
GK: Abel Resino 
Abel Resino was nicknamed the "Cat".  He came to Atletico Madrid in 1986 from lowly CD Ciempozuelos and stayed there until 1995.  He won back-to-back Cops del rey in 1991 and 1992.  He won the Zamora Trophy in 1990-1991 season. He spent a season playing for Rayo Vallecano at the end of his career.  He earned two caps for Span in 1991.

GK: Jose Molina 
Jose Molina joined Atletico Madrid in 1995, he helped the club win a Double (league and Copa del Rey) in his first year. However, after Atletico Madrid relegated after the 1999-2000 season, he moved to Deportivo La Coruna and lasted until 2006.  He played one season with Levante.  He made his national team debut in 1996 as an outfielder because the team had used up all the subs. He had 9 caps in total.

GK: Miguel Reina
Reina started with Cordoba in 1964, but better known for playing with Barcelona and Atlético Madrid (seven years apiece).  He won the Ricardo Zamora Trophy for the 1972–73 season.  With Atletico Madrid, he also reached the final of the 1974 European Cup against FC Bayern Munich at the Heysel Stadium in Belgium.  At the international level, he was capped 5 times.  He was a backup at the World Cup Finals in 1966.  His son is Pepe Reina.
Miguel Reina
RB: Tomas 
Tomas joined Atletico Madrid in 1984 and stayed there until 1996.  His last season was the year Atletico Madrid won the Double. He played two more years in the lower division before retiring.  He was capped 19 times.  He started most of the games at the 1986 World Cup Finals in Mexico and the 1988 European Championship in West Germany.

RB: Feliciano Rivilla 
Feliciano Rivilla was an all-time great with Atletico Madrid.  He started playing football with Real Ávila CF, moving to Real Murcia at the age of 17.  In 1954, he joined Atletico Madrid, where he played until 1968. For Spain, he won the European Championship in 1964 with Spain as a starter, and was a part of two World Cup Finals in 1962 and 1966.

CB: Juan Carlos Arteche 
Juan Carlos Arteche began playing professionally with Racing de Santander after starting in basketball, making his debut in the 1976–77 season.  He joined Atletico Madrid the season after.  He helped the club to reach the Final of Cup Winners' Cup in the 1985-1986 season.  For Spain, he was capped 4 times scoring a goal between 1986 and 1987.

CB: Roberto Solozabal 
Roberto Solozabal was a product of Atletico Madrid academy.  He played there from 1989 to 1997.  He was known for his solid partnership with Juan Manuel Lopez for the season their club won the Double.  He went to Real Betis in 1997.  For Spain, he won the Gold medal at the 1992 Olympics held in Barcelona.  He also earned 12 senior caps.
Roberto Solozabal 
CB: Alfonso Aparicio
At the end of the Spanish Civil War in 1939, Alfonso Aparicio joined Atlético Madrid, then known as Atlético Aviación.  He played 12 seasons there, winning 4 league titles (1939-1940, 1940-1941, 1949-1950, 1950-1951).  In 1952, he joined Boavista FC in Portugal. At the international level, he played 8 times for Spain from 1945 to 1949.

CB: Juanma López 
Juan Manuel López was better known as Juanma López. He was a one club man with Atletico Madrid, where he made his senior debut in 1991. During the 1995–96 campaign, López, often dubbed Super López, formed a solid centre-back partnership withRoberto Solozábal, as the team won an historic double. He was capped 11 times, winning the Gold Medal at the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona. He also went to the Euro 1996 in England.

LB: Isacio Calleja 
Calleja is a long term member of Atletico Madrid.  Safe for a very brief loan spell with CD Guadalajara in the third division, Calleja spent his entire 14-year professional career with Atlético Madrid. He won back-to-back Copa del rey from 1959 to 1961.  In 1962, he won the Cup Winners' Cup. He had 13 caps for Spain. Calleja helped the national side win the 1964 European Nations' Cup on home soil.

LB: José Luis Capón
José Luis Capón played for Atlético Madrid between 1970 and 1980, winning the Spanish League in 1973 and 1977, the Spanish Cup in 1976, and the Intercontinental Cup in 1974. He played in the 1974 European Cup Final, which Atlético lost to Bayern Munich after the replay. He also played Burgos and Elche at the club level. From 1973 to 1977, he won 13 caps for Spain.
José Luis Capón
DM: Juan Vizcaíno
Juan Vizcaíno started playing with hometown's Gimnàstic de Tarragona, not yet aged 17, with the club in the third division. In 1986, Vizcaíno moved to Real Zaragoza. From 1990 to 1998, he played for Atlético Madrid.  He later played for Real Valladolid, Elche CF and his first club, Gimnàstic.  From 1991 to 1992, he played 15 times for Spain.

CM: Adelardo Rodriguez 
Adelardo spent 17 years with Atletico Madrid.  He held the appearance record for the club.  During his spell, the club won three La Liga titles (65–66, 69–70 and 72–73), five Copa del Reys (1960, 1961, 1965, 1972 and 1976), the 1962 European Cup Winners' Cup, the 1974 Intercontinental Cup. He earned 14 caps for Spain between 1962 and 1970.  He went to the World Cup in 1962 and 1966.
Adelardo Rodriguez 
CM: Koke 
Koke spent most of his career with Atlético Madrid since making his debut with the first team in 2009, playing over 300 official games and winning five honours, including the 2014 national championship and the 2012 Europa League. He won the 2013 European Championship with the Spanish under-21 team. He also made his debut for the full side that year, and represented the country at the 2014 and 2018 World Cup and Euro 2016.

CM: Gabi 
At the time of writing, Gabi is the captain of Atletico Madrid.  He played for Atletico Madrid between 2004 and 2007 before moving to Zaragoza.  In 2011, he returned to Atletico Madrid, coinciding with the rise of Simeone's team.  He first took the Copa del Rey in 2013 and then, the league title in 2013-2014.  He captained the side that reached the Champions' league Final twice.

AM/CM: Javier Irureta
Javier Irureta started with local Real Unión in 1965 before joining Atlético Madrid in 1967. During his time at the club he was part of a team that won two La Liga titles and a Copa del Rey, playing alongside the likes of Adelardo, Luis Aragonés and José Eulogio Gárate. They also reached the European Cup final in 1974.  From 1975 to 1990, he played for Athletic Bilbao, where he reached the Final of the 1977 UEFA Cup.  He played 6 times for Spain.

AM/CM: Jose Luis Caminero 
Jose Luis Caminero was a product of Real Madrid, but started his career with Real Valladolid.  In 1993, he moved to Atletico Madrid.  Over there, he won the Double in 1995-1996 and the Spanish Player of the Year that same season. He returned to Real Valladolid. At the international level, he had 21 caps and played in the 1994 World Cuop Finals in the USA and the 1996 European Championship in England. 
Jose Luis Caminero 
RW: Jose Ufarte 
Born in Spain, but Jose Ufarte moved to Brazil as a child.  He started with Flamengo and Corinthians in Brazil before he returned home and signed with Atletico Madrid He played on the great Atletico Madrid side of the 1960's.  He later played with Racing Santander.  He earned 16 caps.  Ufarte represented Spain at the 1966 World Cup in England.

RW/FW: José Juncosa
Juncosa began his professional career at CF Reus in the 1941/42 season. Then, he played for Espanyol before he joined Atlético de Madrid in 1944, a club in which he would remain eleven years., 
With Atlético de Madrid, he would be part of two of their best-known attack formations:  "La llamada Delantera de Seda" and "La llamada Delantera de Cristal". At the international level, he was capped twice. One of the caps were played in the 1950 World Cup Finals.

LW/FW: Joaquin Peiro 
Joaquin Peiro is a legend at Atletic Madrid.  He starred as his hometown club won back-to-back Copa del Rey from 1959 to 1961 and the Cup Winners' Cup in 1962. In 1962, he moved to play for Torino in Italy.  Then, in 1964, he joined Inter Milan and won the European Cup in 1965 as a member "la Grande Inter".  He later played and captained Roma. He had 12 caps in a 10 year period.

FW: Luis Aragones 
Luis Aragones is known as the coach of Spain's European Championship winning team in 2008.  As a player, he started with Getafe in 1957 and then, Real Madrid a year later. But he never made a mark.  He finally made a name with Real Betis and signed with Atletico Madrid in 1964, where he won three league titles. He is the club's all-time leading scorer.  H was known for his freekick. He was capped 11 times between 1964 and 1972.
Luis Aragones

LW/RW: Enrique Collar 
Born in 1934, Enrique Collar spent most of his career with Atletico Madrid from 1952 to 1969.  He played a single season with Valencia befoe he retired from playing.  He was a part of the great Atletico Madrid side that won the Cup Winners' Cup in 1962.  He earned 16 caps, scoring 4 goals for Spain.  He also went to the World Cup Finals in 1962 as Spain's captain, but only made a single appearance at the Finals.

ST: Adrián Escudero 
Escudero arrived at Atlético Madrid in late 1945, from local amateurs Club Deportivo Mediodía. He was the all-time leading goalscorer for Atlético Madrid with 170 goals, having appeared for the club in 13 La Liga seasons and played in more than 350 official games.  At the international level, he was capped 3 times between 1952 and 1956.

Fernando Torres started his career with Atletico Madrid in 2001, where he became the captain at age 19. In 2007, he moved to Liverpool FC and became a big star in England.  In 2011, Chelsea allegedly broke the British transfer record to buy him.  He was a part of the Champions' league winning team in 2012.  For the national team, he was a part of the generation that won the World Cup in 2010 and two European Championships (2008 and 2012).  At Euro 2012, he was the top-scorer.
Fernando Torres 
Born in Argentina, Jose Eulogio Garate grew up in Eibar. He was a Basque, but was overlooked by Atletico Bilboa.  He was a member of the legendary Atletico Madrid side that won three league titles in the 1970's. Atletico finished second at the 1974 European Cup, but won the Intercontinental Cup that year. He also won the Pichichi Trophy three straight times: 1969-1970, 1970-1971 and 1971-1972. He was capped 18 times between 1967 and 1975. He never played in a major tournament because Spain failed to qualify for any.
Jose Eulogio Garate

Honorable Mention
Alfonso Silva, David De Gea, Kiko, Juanfranc, Juan Carlos AguileraLuis Garcia, Antonio "Toni" Munoz, German Gomez, Machin, Diego Costa, Marcelino, Raúl García, Paco Campos.

Team Explanation
 -- Fernando Torres, Tomas, Gabi, Jose Eulogio Garate, Enrique Collar, Abel Resino, Jose Molina, Feliciano Rivilla, Juan Carlos Arteche, Roberto Solozabal,  Isacio Calleja, Adelardo Rodriguez  Jose Luis Caminer, Jose Ufarte, Joaquin Peiro and Luis Aragones are on my All-Time Team for Atletico Madrid.  I built my team with those players.  So I only need to add 9 players to this group of players.
-- David De Gea might be a better goalkeeper than Miguel Reina,  but Miguel Reina had a longer career here.  He edged out David De Gea for the third keeper spot.
-- José Luis Capón edged out Toni for the left back position.
-- I need to find two centerback to replace the foreign players from the All-Time Team.  I took Juanma López for one of the spots. Alfonso Aparicio edged out Santi and Miguel Ángel Ruiz for the last spot. 
-- Both right backs are from the all-time team.  Juanfran missed out.
-- Koke has earned a spot after playing so many years for Diego Simeone's Atletico Madrid.
-- Juan Vizcaíno was a fundamental player for Atletico Madrid winning the Double in the 1995/1996 season.
-- José Juncosa was chosen because he could operate as a right wing-forward.  
-- The team under Diego Simeone deserved a lot of selections.  They reached the Final of the Champions' League twice. However, only Fernando Torres, Koke and Gabi made the team. 
-- Under manager Helenio Herrera , Atlético Madrid won La Liga in 1950 and 1951.  It was a Golden period for the club. Joaquin Peiro, Adelardo Rodriguez, Isacio Calleja, Feliciano Rivilla  and Jose Ufarte belonged to that generation.
-- Diego Costa is eligible for this team because he is cap-tied to Spain.  Thus, he is considered to be a domestic player.  However, he only made honorable mention.
-- Adrián Escudero edged out Diego Costa because he was more of a historical player. Diego Costa's peak was limited to a single season.


Monday, February 18, 2019

Atletico Madrid All-Time Team for Foreign Players

This blogger Artur Yanturin of Russia copied many of my blog teams.  This blog was one of them.  It was my Russia All-Time Team here.  His team was written in 2020, but mine was uploaded in 2014.   His Spartak Moscow All-Time team entry of was published in October 2020, but mine was uploaded in 2017.  His entry of the Dutch-German rivalry between Real Madrid and Barcelona was written in 2020, but mine was uploaded in 2014.  He also copied many many of my blog entries.

His Facebook and Instagram

Filipe Luís and Diego Godin

Please also see my All-Time World Cup Team Index.

Real MadridBarcelonaValencia,
Atletico MadridSevillaAtletic Bilbao, 
Deportivo La Coruna  Real Sociedad,
Real BetisReal ZaragozaEspanyol
Atletico Madrid All-Time Team for Spanish players

This is my selection of a 25 member all-time team for Atletico Madrid's foreign players.  The number 25 was chosen because it is the official squad size for the Champions' League.

Atletico Madrid is the third best team in Spain after Real Madrid and Barcelona. They were runner-ups at the European Cup three times, won a singe Cup Winners' Cup and two Europa League.  In 1995-1996, they also won the Double(La Liga and Copa del Rey).

Atlético's home kit is red and white vertical striped shirts, with blue shorts, and blue and red socks. This combination has been used since 1911. Throughout their history the club has been known by a number of nicknames, including Los Colchoneros ("The Mattress Makers"), due to their first team stripes being the same colours as traditional mattresses. During the 1970s, they became known as Los Indios, which some attribute to the club's signing several South American players after the restrictions on signing foreign players were lifted. .
Diego Simeone and Milinko Pantic 
GK: Thibaut Courtois (Belgium)
Thibaut Courtois joined Chelsea from Genk in 2011, but he was sent away to Atletico Madrid immediately.  He won the Europa League in his first season and then, a Copa del Rey in his second season.  In his final season, Atletico Madrid reached the Final of the Champions' League, but lost to Real Madrid.  He was the starting keeper for Belgium at World Cup 2014 and 2018, and Euro 2016.

Thibaut Courtois
GK: Jan Oblak  (Slovenia)
Oblak made his debut for Olimpija Ljubljana in the 2009–10 season aged 16 before joining Benfica in 2010.  Starting in 2014, he plays for Atletico Madrid. At the time of writing, he has won La Liga Zamora Trophy three times.  At the international level, he became the first-choice goalkeeper of the national team after the international retirement of Samir Handanović at the end of 2015.

GK: Edgardo Madinabeytia (Argentina)
Madinabeytia started his playing career in 1950 with Huracán in Argentina he made over 100 appearances for the club before joining Atletico de Madrid in 1958. During his time with Atletico the club won La Liga once, three Copa del Rey and the 1961–62 European Cup Winners' Cup. He made a total of 237 appearances for the club in all competitions. In 1967, he joined Real Murcia of the Segunda División where he played until his retirement in 1969.

CB/RB: Luis Perea (Columbia)
Luis Perea began his professional career with Independiente Medellín, moving in 2003 to Argentina with Boca Juniors, with whom he won that year's Intercontinental Cup. From 2004 and 2012, he played for Atletico Madrid.  He is their all-time appearance record player for a foreigner. With Cruz Azul, he won the 2013–14 CONCACAF Champions League. From 2002 to 2014, he played over 70 times for Colombia.

CB/RB: Tomas Ujfalusi  (Czech Republic)
Tomas Ujfalusi played 78 times for the Czech Republic, representing the nation at the 2006 World Cup and two European Championships.  He was a key player for the 2000s Golden Generation.   He played for Hamburg, Atlético Madrid, Galatasaray, Sigma Olomouc and Sparta Prague. He won the Europa League in 2010 with Atletico Madrid.

CB: Jorge Griffa (Argentina)
Jorge Griffa started his career with Newell's Old Boys in 1954.  He moved to Spain in 1959 where he played 9 seasons with Atletico Madrid and two more with RCD Espanyol, where he helped the club to grain promotion.  With Atletico Madrid, he won the Cup Winners' Cup in 1962 and a runner-up medal a year later.  At the international level, he was capped 4 times.  He helped Argentina to win the Copa America in 1959.
Jorge Griffa 
CB: Heriberto Herrera (Paraguay)
Heriberto Herrera helped the Albirroja to win the 1953 Copa America and was named the best player of the tournament. He had 5 caps for Paraguay and later played one game for the Spain national football team in 1957 after he moved to play in La Liga. He played with Club Nacional at home and then, with Atletico Madrid between 1952 and 1959.  

CB: Diego Godin (Uruguay)
With Uruguay, he reached the WC semifinal in 2010 and won a Copa America in  2011.  Godín started his professional career with C.A. Cerro at the age of 17. After his good performances, he was transferred to top division powerhouse Club Nacional de Football. In 2007, Godín signed a five-year deal with La Liga side Villarreal CF.  He was a key player for Atletico Madrid when they upset Real Madrid and Barcelona for the La Liga title in 2013-2014. 

CB: Luis Pereira (Brazil)
Luis Pereira was widely considered to be the best central back in the Seleção's history. He was capped over 30 times, but only the 1974 World Cup Finals held in West Germany and remembered receiving a red card against Holland. He played 562 games with S.E. Palmeiras (34 goals) and 171 games with Atlético Madrid (17 goals). With Atletico Madrid, he was considered one of the best defender playing in Europe.  He won La Liga in 1977.
Luis Pereira
LB: Filipe Luís Kasmirski (Brazil) 
Filipe Luis started his career with Figueirense.  He moved to Europe where he played for many clubs, including Ajax, Real Madrid B and Deportivo La Coruna.  He was the starting leftback or Atletico Madrid when they won La Liga in 2013-2014. He joined Chelsea in 2014, but only spent a season there.  His surname is Kasmirski, but better known as just Filipe Luis.  Since 2009, he plays for Brazil. 

DM: MirkoVotava (Germany)
Born in Prague, Czechoslovakia, Votava started learning his football trade at local FK Dukla. However, his parents left the country during the Prague Spring. He began playing professionally with Borussia Dortmund in 1974. He subsequently moved to Atlético Madrid in 1982, winning the Copa del Rey in 1985.  In 1986, he joined Werder Bremen, winning the Cup Winners' Cup in 1992.

DM: Tiago Mendes (Portugal)
Tiago Mendes played professionally in five of Europe's major leagues: Portugal, England, France, Italy and Spain. He notably spent eight seasons with Atlético Madrid, winning five major titles including the 2013–14 La Liga and the 2012 Europa League. He also played for Braga, Benfica, Lyon, Chelsea and Juventus.  Capped 66 times for Portugal.  He participated in Euro 2004 and the World Cup Finals in 2006 and 2010.

DM: Diego Simeone (Argentina)
Simeone started his career with Velez Sarsfield before moving to Europe. He first joined Pisa and Sevilla before going to Atletico Madrid.  He won the Double with them in 1995-1996.  He then moved to Inter Milan, where he won the UEFA Cup in 1998.  In 1999, he moved to Lazio.  Again, he won the Double. For Argentina, he was capped 106 times. He won Copa America in 1991 and 1993.  He went to play in three WC Finals; 1994, 1998 and 2002. 

CM: Bernd Schuster (Germany)
Schuster was the star of West Germany's Euro 1980 winning team, but disagreed with the German Football Association and seldom played for West Germany after the tournament.  He started with FC Koln in 1978. He was a star at La Liga in the 1980's, playing for Barcelona, Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid. He was the first player to have won the Spanish Cup for the big three in Spain. He later played for Bayer Leverkusen.
Bernd Schuster 
AM: Milinko Pantic (Serbia) 
Pantic started with FK Paritizan back home. He went to play with Olimpija Ljubljana and Panionios FC without making any dramatic mark.  At the age of 28, he moved to Atletico Madrid and suddenly, huis career took off. He led them to the Double in his first season.  After 3 seasons, he went to La Harve and then, back to Panionios.  He was only capped 2 times by Yugoslavia.

AM: Dirceu (Brazil) 
Dirceu were on three World Cup teams: 1974, 1978 and 1982.  His best tournament was in 1978, where he made the All-tournament team and awarded the Bronze Ball.  For his club career, he played for various clubs in Brazil and Mexico before joining Atletico Madrid in 1979.  From 1982 to 1987, he played for 5 different Italian clubs.

AM: Larbi Benbarek (France/Morocco)
Larbi Benbarek was born and raised in Morocco in the period when the country was under the French rule.  He was the first Black player to reach stardom in Europe, earning the nick name "Black Pearl". He made his name with Stade Francasis Paris.  In 1948, he moved to Atletico Madrid, where he reached the height of his career and won two La Liga title.  He is considered one of the greatest ever French player. He was capped 19 times between 1938 and 1954.
Larbi Benbarek
LW:  Paulo Futre (Portugal)
Futre won a European Cup with Porto in 1987. He was the best Portuguese player in the 1980's. He gained more than 40 caps for his country, representing it at the 1986 World Cup in Mexico.  He played in Spain, France, Italy and Japan, most notably with Atlético Madrid and Porto.  With Porto, he won the European Cup in 1987, putting on a Man of the match performance in the final against FC Bayern Munich.

FW/AM: Sergio Aguero (Argentina)
El Kun became the youngest player ever to play in the Argentine Primera Division in 2003 when he played for Independiente.  In 2006, Atletico Madrid broke their transfer record to sign him.  He rewarded the club with the Europa Cup in 2010.  In 2011, he joined Manchester City. Again, he rewarded the club with an added time goal that won the Preimership for Manchester City's first ever title. At the time of writing, he had 77 caps.  

CF: Henry Carlsson (Sweden)
In 1939, Henry Carlsson made his debut with AIK.  After winning the Olympic Gold medal in 1948, he moved to play for Stade Français in France as an amateur. In 1949, he started his professional career with Atletico Madrid at the age of 32, winning two league titles in Spain.  At Madrid, he played under Helenio Herrera alongside Larbi Benbarek. For Sweden, he was capped 26 times between 1941 and 1949.

ST: Hugo Sanchez (Mexico)
Hugo Sanchez was considered to be the best Mexican player of all-time. He is remembered for his career in Spain where he played for both Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid.  He won 5 straight Pichichi title in Spain.  With Real Madrid, he won five consecutive league titles (from 1985-86 to 1989-90), the Copa del Rey in 1989, and the UEFA Cup in 1986.  The team was the dominant team in Spain during the 1980's.

ST:  Radamel Falcao (Colombia)
At the time of writing, Radamel Falcao is playing for AS Monaco. He also played for Porto and Atletico Madrid, where he won the Europa Cup for each of them.  He played in the World Cup Finals in 2018, but he missed the 2014 Finals through an injury. He is Colombia's all-time leading scorer. At the club level, he also played in England for Manchester United and Chelsea, and in Argentina with River Plate.
Radamel Falcao 
ST: Vava (Brazil)
Vava's nickname was "Peito de Aço" (Steel Chest). He played for Sport Club do Recife, C.R. Vasco da Gama, S.E. Palmeiras.  He was capped 20 times.  He won the World Cup in 1958 and 1962 World Cup Finals.  He won the co-winner of the Golden Shoe award in 1962.  He scored in the final of both 1958 (twice) and 1962 (once), thus becoming the first player to score in the final of two different world cups. 

ST:  Diego Forlan (Uruguay)
Diego Forlan's career in Europe started slowly, but his career finally took off after heading to Spain in 2004.  He was two-time European Golden Shoe winner in 2004-2005 and then, 2008-2009.  His best years were with Villarreal and Atletico Madrid, winning the UEFA Europa League with the latter. He had 112 caps, leading Uruguay to  the 2011 Copa America title as well the semi-final of the 2010 World Cup Finals.  He won the Golden Ball at South Africa 2010.

ST: Christian Vieri (Italy)
Christian Vieri was born in Italy, but grew up in Australia.  At the club level, he played for 12 clubs in his career.  He played in Italy, Spain and France. He was the Serie A Footballer of the Year in 1999. He became the most expensive player in the world when Inter Milan signed him from Lazio.  For the national team, he made his debut in 1997 and played in his last game in 2006.  He won the Silver in France 1998.  He missed out on the 2006 World Cup team, where Italy won the World Cup.

Honorable Mention
Juninho Paulista (Brazil), Leivinha (Brazil), Arden Turan (Turkey), Santos Ovejero (Argentina), Ramón Heredia (Argentina), ,Leo Franco (Argentina), Ramiro (Brazil), Simao (Portugal), Diego (Brazil), Radek Bejbl (Czechoslavakia).

Squad Explanation
-- Jan Oblak (Slovenia), Diego Forlan (Uruguay), Diego Simeone (Argentina), Diego Godin (Uruguay), Luis Pereira (Brazil), Milinko Pantic (Serbia), Sergio Aguero (Argentina), Paulo Futre (Portugal) and Larbi Benbarek (France/Morocco) are also on my All-Time Atletico Madrid team.  Basically, they are my automatic selections.
-- When I wrote this blog team, Thibaut Courtois was with Real Madrid for less than a season.  His transfer to Atletico Madrid's biggest rival was not a factor yet.  In 2020, I decided to put Jan Oblak (Slovenia) ahead of him. Oblak now has a longer career.
-- Germán Burgos was better known for his spell as Atletcio Madrid's assistant coach under manager Diego Simeone. Leo Franco would be ahead of him since he was a starter for many years.
-- During my research, I came upon Marcel Domingo, but I do not know much about him.  I also did not know much about Edgardo Madinabeytia, but he won the Cup Winners' Cup in 1962. 
-- Although both Donato and Diego Costa were born in Brazil, they were cap-tied by Spain.  They are considered to be "domestic" player.
-- Luis Pereira is amomg the all-time appearance leader for a foreign player.  He is also considered one of Brazil's greatest centerbacks.
-- There were not many foreign right backs of note who played for the club. Tomás Ujfalusi was in the side that won the UEFA Europa League in 2010. He played as a rightback. Georgios Seitaridis (Greece) never settled down with the club.
-- I admitted not knowing much about Miroslav "Mirko" Votava.  He was also on my all-time team for Werder Bremen.
-- This team lacked a good alternative defensive midfielder after Diego Simeone. Maniche and Costinha never settled down in Madrid. In the end, I selected Tiago Mendes over Radek Bejbl (Czechoslavakia)because his career in Madrid was longer.
-- I chose Milinko Pantic, Larbi Benbarek  and Dirceu and over Juninho Paulista.
-- Henry Carlsson (Sweden) was a star player under manager Helenio Herrera alongside Larbi Benbarek. 
-- Radamel Falcao's career was brief, but he won an Europa League. 
-- Hugo Sanchez was known for his career with Real Madrid, but he actually spent 5 seasons with Atletico Madrid. He won the Trofeo Pichichi.
-- Diego Costa played for Spain.  He is captied to them.  
-- In 2021, a video surfaced that allegedly showed Antoine Griezmann making racist remarks on an Asian man.  Griezmann is not good enough to be on this team.  So the incident does not affect his inclusion on this team.

Both Jan Oblak  and Diego Forlan are on my All-time team.