Not many players in the world would have the privilege of being named by Cristiano Ronaldo or Lionel Messi to succeed them as the best players after the two greats retire from football.
Their stay at the top of the world has been truly documented. They have enjoyed being named the best players in the world for well over a decade and share ten Ballon d’Or awards between them.
Many expect their reign to come to an end in the next couple of years as they enter the wrong side of 30 this year and may not be in pole position for the global awards. But who succeeds them?
Ronaldo has identified a few he thinks will be primed to dominate football for years to come.
The five-time Ballon d’Or holder spoke to World Soccer and is reported by AS in Spain who say the Portugal legend named Real Madrid teammate Marco Asensio as a real candidate for the top player award next season.
He did not stop there. He mentioned Paris Saint Germain, Barcelona and Manchester United wonder boys Kylian Mbappe, Ousmane Dembele and Marcus Rashford as the future of world football.
Chelsea’s Eden Hazard was not left out as he remains one of the best players in the world.
Willian sends clear message to Antonio Conte about Chelsea FC future
Willian has insisted that he always respected Antonio Conte’s decisions even if he was frustrated at his lack of playing time at Chelsea FC last season.
The Brazilian playmaker found his starting opportunities at Stamford Bridge to be somewhat limited last season, with the 29-year-old having only started 20 of Chelsea FC’s 38 Premier League games.
Despite his lack of playing time, the attacker still managed to net 13 goals and make eight assists in all competitions for the west London club last season.
Willian’s future at Chelsea FC beyond the summer has inevitably been a source of speculation because of his lack of playing time last season under Conte.
However, the player himself has insisted that he retains full respect for the Chelsea FC boss, even if he admits that he would rather have played more regularly last term.
Willian told a news conference on Tuesday while on international duty with Brazil: “I was happy with my performance during the season, I played very well I always try to do my best and work hard.
“Sometimes to stay on the bench is difficult but I respect the decision of the manager. I think it was that I don’t have nothing more to say about my club because now I want to have focus here on the national team and the World Cup.”
Chelsea FC are likely to be on the lookout for a number of new signings this summer as they look to build a squad capable of winning the Premier League next term.
The Blues missed out on qualification for next season’s Champions League after they finished fifth, but they did win the FA Cup.