Lionel Messi wants to leave Barcelona.
Even after typing those words multiple times in the past few days, it still hasn’t sunk in.
The Argentine has been at Barca for two decades and has established himself as the greatest player to have ever played the game.
Seeing him playing in a club shirt other than the red and blue of Barcelona will take some getting used to.
While we’re more than happy to call him the greatest ever, Barcelona fans don’t even consider him the greatest to have ever played for the Spanish club. No, seriously.
More than 73,000 votes have been cast on ranker.com, asking fans to rank the greatest Barcelona players of all time.
And Messi ISN’T at No.1. Crazy.
So, who is in the top 20 - and where on earth does Messi rank?
Let’s take a look:
20 | Marc-Andre ter Stegen
The current Barcelona goalkeeper signed for the club in 2014 and has established himself as one of the greatest ‘keepers in world football.
19 | Sergio Busquets
The 32-year-old may not have a future at the club under Ronald Koeman but he’s given the club an incredible 12 years of service.
18 | Pep Guardiola
The man who could tempt Messi to leave Barcelona - would that see Guardiola lose his legendary status at the Camp Nou? As a player, he played almost 400 times, winning six league titles.
17 | Michael Laudrup
Laudrup was only at Barcelona for five seasons before he moved onto Real Madrid. He did win four league titles at the club though.
16 | Gheorghe Hagi
A legendary player but does he deserve to be in the top 20 for playing just two seasons and making 51 appearances? Probably not.
15 | Dani Alves
The Brazilian right-back enjoyed eight seasons at the Camp Nou and had an incredible relationship with Messi. Alves had six league titles and three Champions League titles to show for his efforts.
14 | Luis Suarez
Suarez has been told he can leave the club by Koeman. Barca fans won’t forget the 198 goals he’s scored in 283 appearances for the club.
13 | Samuel Eto’o
Five seasons, 130 goals, three league titles and two Champions Leagues. Not bad, Samuel.
12 | Ronald Koeman
The club’s current manager. He became a legend during his six campaigns in Catalonia, scoring 67 goals in 192 matches.
11 | Diego Maradona
One of the greatest players to play the game? Undoubtedly.
One of the greatest players for Barcelona? Probably not.
Maradona spent two seasons at Barca, scoring 38 goals in 58 matches. Certainly not a bad return but it was only when he moved to Napoli did he become one of the best ever.
10 | Rivaldo
Rivaldo never spent too long at a single club but he did last five years at Barca. Who can forget his incredible overhead kick against Valencia to complete a hat-trick and seal Champions League qualification back in 2001? He ended his Barca career with an impressive 130 goals in 235 appearances. Unfortunately, he didn’t manage a land a league title during that time.
9 | Romario
Another situation where perhaps the overall status of the player has influenced the vote.
Romario was brilliant and produced an incredible debut season by scoring 30 goals in 33 La Liga appearances.
But things unravelled during his second campaign and he left 18 appearances into the 1994/95 season.
8 | Ronaldo
Imagine spending just one season at a club and being voted as their eighth-best player of all time. Well, that’s the case for Ronaldo, who scored 47 goals in 49 appearances for Barca before signing for Inter Milan.
7 | Carles Puyol
Puyol may be tumbling down this list after he showed his support to Messi for wanting to leave the club. During his playing career, though, he played almost 600 times for the club and was the club captain for almost 10 years.
6 | Xavi
Just the 767 games and 25 trophies for Barcelona. He's almost certain to become the club’s manager at some stage in his coaching career.
5 | Andres Iniesta
Iniesta got his hands on seven more trophies at Barcelona than Xavi did. Perhaps that’s why he ranks slightly above his midfield partner.
How good were those two together by the way?
4 | Ronaldinho
Ronaldinho was the best player on the planet during his time at Barcelona. The magical Brazilian scored 94 goals during his five seasons and brought a smile to the face of every football fan who was lucky enough to witness him.
3 | Johan Cruyff
The three-time Ballon d’Or winner was probably more successful during his years at Ajax than at Barca. But he certainly made a big impact at the club during his five seasons, despite only winning one league title. A revolutionary figure who would go on to manage the club for eight years, winning four further La Ligas.
2 | Lionel Messi
What? Messi is only at No.2!?
How on earth can the six-time Ballon d’Or winner, who has scored 634 goals and won 33 trophies possibly be in second place?
He’s not even second place in the greatest players to have ever played the game, let alone at Barcelona…
1 | Hristo Stoichkov
So…Barca fans have voted Stoichkov as the club’s greatest player of all time.
Look, we don’t want to take anything away from the legendary Bulgarian but better than Messi? Surely not.
Stoichkov initially spent five years at the club with the striker scoring 107 goals in 214 appearances. Not quite Messi numbers.
He then returned to Barca in 1996 and could only manage nine goals in 41 games.
What’s that noise? Oh, just Leo Messi sniggering to himself…
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