Top 10 Greatest Soccer NationsLet's be honest about this. It's not just about where you're from. Honestly, who is the best?
Brazil has the most World Cup victories. Brazil qualified for all World Cups. Brazil has many great players. The Brazilian skill is just insane.
Skill and participation are two different things. I generally do not like European soccer (except for Italy, France, and Spain) because it is so robotic and boring. I much prefer the Latin style of soccer, where ball control and unexpected plays are the norm. Brazil has produced the most soccer stars, and the best by far, Pelé. It also has qualified for every single World Cup, and many years it could have won the cup with its "B" team, not to mention it has won 5 times. No other nation comes even close, although Italy is following Brazil's path. I don't count Argentina since its '78 cup was won under evident bribing and corruption of opposing teams, and who can forget the no-call handball of Maradona in the Mexico '86 final against Germany.
Some territory was lost after World War 1 and a lot more after World War 2, basically started by Hitler's Nazi dictatorship. Then the Soviets kept their zone... read more
Germany is the most consistent team in the world. Brazil was great, but look at them now! They were crushed in the World Cup by Germany. Germany might not have a Ronaldo, Maradona, or Messi, but they have solid players in every position. Brazil, Italy, Spain, Argentina, etc., all have good players, but they also have some holes in some positions. Besides, we do have the greatest goalkeeper in the world and ever to live.
When it comes to our players, we have a strong squad that can play fantastically, and all are masters of passing. Italy is never consistent and relies too much on older players. Spain isn't a contender because they have won it once and only now are becoming a considerable force. Argentina is a joke when it comes to competition because of their massive gap in player quality! They have Messi as a striker, then a random 19-year-old who is playing his first game behind him!
The Netherlands is the only team that I truly respect. They also make it to the semi-finals, and despite not having a titan squad, can play fantastically together. Overall, Germany has the best soccer life, best squad and players, best tactics, and is the most consistent. We also have won 4 World Cups!
The best football team in the history of football, Argentina, is the champion of champions. No other country is like Argentina. It deserves to be in 1st place. They have everything needed to be the best. Every player from Argentina is a legend. And Argentina has produced two of the best players on the planet, "Messi" and "Maradona." These two are unparalleled. It doesn't matter how many times they've won the World Cups. The main thing is how they play, and they play the best. Argentina is the home of football, where all legendary footballers have come from. So, Argentina is a God-gifted country and it still remains the best, no matter what ranking they are in. Argentina has always been better than Brazil and Germany and will continue to be in the future...
This is way off. It seems people are only focusing on World Cup titles. Argentina and France are the only nations to have won every major competition at the senior level. Argentina has 2 World Cups, 14 Copa Americas (South American championships), two Olympic gold medals, and a FIFA Confederations Cup, making them the nation with the most titles at a senior level behind Uruguay with 19 official titles. The reason I don't rank them first is that they have never won gold at the Olympics. Titles are titles, tournaments are tournaments. How can Brazil be first if they are third in South American titles behind Uruguay and Argentina? Also, you guys are ranking nations solely on players - not enough to rank, e.g., Portugal, who never won anything. My humble ranking would be: 1st Argentina, 2nd Uruguay (remember, Uruguay wears 4 stars on their shirts. They won the equivalent to the World Cup before it was established, twice, making them 4-time winners), third Brazil, fourth Germany, fifth Italy.
Italy covers an area of 301,338 km². With almost 62 million inhabitants, it is the third most populous EU member state. Located in the heart of the Mediterranean Sea, Italy shares open land borders with France, Switzerland, Austria, Slovenia, San Marino, and Vatican City. The... read more
Italy, for me, is the No. 2 after Brazil, with Germany only at No. 3.
Why? If you look at it historically (and that's what the word "greatest" implies to me), Italy has been a dominant force in the World Cups from the very beginning, winning two consecutive tournaments, a feat that only Brazil has matched.
They have consistently performed well, becoming champions two more times in 1982 and 2006, and finishing second in 1970 and 1994, both times behind Brazil.
They have four titles, which Germany also has, but only since last year. For me, the timing of these victories matters. Italy secured their first two championships in the 1930s, while Germany only began to show strength starting in 1954, and their victory against Hungary was more a result of luck and rain than skill.
Italy won their third title in 1982, eight years before Germany's third, and their fourth in 2006, also eight years before Germany's fourth.
Brazil had their five titles already by 2002 when Italy and Germany both had only three. And they are just THE football nation... That's why Brazil is definitely No. 1.
But Italy is certainly underrated in this poll and should be No. 2, just as surely as Brazil is No. 1.
Germany might get the prize for consistency, okay, but when talking about the greatest football nation, by historical depth and charisma, Nos. 1 and 2 are certainly Brazil and Italy.
Spain should be considered the best soccer nation in the world because they've got some of the top players ever, such as Iniesta, Ramos, David Silva, Xavi, Pedro, and Xabi Alonso. Now, I know Spain has only won one title in the World Cup, but they are better than any team. Just watch them.
Not only does Spain have the best teams, such as Real Madrid and Barcelona, but its national team also boasts players from these top teams. In recent years, Spain has won almost every tournament it has participated in, including the World Cup and the Eurocup.
Spain is home to some of the greatest modern and historical players. Whether or not they place in the World Cup, their players are instrumental in the victories of many other countries.
One of the smallest nations in the world, the Netherlands has produced a ridiculous number of all-star players. Their Orange Legion fans are known around the globe for their fair play and good spirit, even among their opponents with whom they can sing and dance. It's also the country with the world's worst luck when it comes to winning the cup. They were close many times and always lost it in the end. But every nation respects their vision of football and always fears the Dutch lions when they enter the field.
The Netherlands produces one of the most entertaining football to watch with their attacking formations and quick ball circulations. They should be higher up the rankings if you ask me.
There are more soccer players in each of the top-5 countries than the entire Dutch population (17 million). It's a shame Oranje lost three World Cup finals. In all the finals, they could have scored more goals than the eventual winner. Too many times, it has gone wrong in the semis, mostly due to stupid losses against weaker teams.
Also, the fact that Ajax, a 6-time major European competition winner, is from Holland makes this top sport more than deserved. Imagine where this small country would have been if they just were a bit less arrogant in the final phase of big tournaments...
France should definitely be in the top 5. I like to think that any football tournament before the '70s should not really count because, back then, only a few nations competed and the organization was awful. This gave the teams that cared the most the best chance (Italy, England, Uruguay, Brazil). France used to be horrible because they really did not care, and as a result, not many people gave them a chance.
However, if you look at their modern performance, they are definitely one of the greatest football nations ever. Euro 1984 winners, 1998 World Cup winners, Euro 2000 winners, Confederation Cup winners in 2001 and 2003, World Cup finalists in 2006 (which they frankly should have won). I would honestly say that France's 1998 through 2001 team was the second-best team in the history of football, second only to Spain's current team.
Of course, Brazil dominated in the earlier part of the 20th century, but if you look at the competition back then, it really is not saying much. Now, with all the best players being paid ridiculous amounts of cash and playing high-level soccer in youth academies and clubs, the best each nation has to offer is put to the test, more so than before. And with that, you have to give France credit where credit is due. They have produced better players recently than most other nations. Those are my two cents.
England can trace its history as far back as the 10th century, but modern England didn't start till the Norman Invasion of 1066. In 1535, England annexed Wales and in 1603 shared a Monarch with Scotland, which eventually led to the Unification of the two... read more
If there was an alternative to penalty shootouts, England might have won at least two more World Cups. They've had great older players like Shearer, Lineker, Beckham, Owen, and the legendary Bobby Moore, along with some outstanding current players like Rooney, Sterling, Welbeck, Sturridge, and the now internationally retired Gerrard. And despite being heavily criticized for reasons I can't fathom, Heskey was a formidable player. It's just that the teamwork needs improvement. Look how well they've done in the qualification rounds! It's really frustrating how they falter in the main event. But I hope this boosts English hopes. If only penalty shootouts didn't exist...
Ha, England, the history of football, the reason why we all are here talking about this very subject, the reason FIFA, leagues, and players like Neymar, Ronaldo, Messi, Pelé, and Maradona all became who they are. Not only this, but teams like Leicester and Spurs are filled with English talent, some being their best: Dele Alli, Kane, Dier, Vardy. These teams have great youth scouting and training, and since they are English clubs, we can expect many future English stars. And of course, my final point is the World Cup that England won. It was a special cup because of how well England smashed the other teams, not even with some of their best-ever players. So, how well do you think they did in the other cups with those legendary players?
Portugal has done tremendously well considering the lack of talent they have on the current side. They have the best player of all time in Cristiano Ronaldo, and he has done tremendously well carrying them to three finals and European glory.
Portugal has had and currently has legendary players such as Eusébio, Luís Figo, Cristiano Ronaldo, and many others. Even though they have never won a World Cup, they are definitely in the top 10.
Let's take population size into consideration. Portugal has only 10 million people, but currently has two world-class managers in the Premier League, as well as Cristiano Ronaldo, possibly the best player in the world, and a host of other world-class and Premier League players (Meireles, Postiga, Pauleta, etc.).
You can argue that Brazil, Germany, Italy, and Argentina can be ranked higher, but to place them below Mexico, Portugal, and France is just not right. With 4 World Titles, 15 Continental titles, and the 1980 Gold Cup played between past World Cup winners, Uruguay's achievements are formidable. All this from a population of 3.5 million people - that's the equivalent of a neighborhood in Buenos Aires or Mexico City. Per capita, this little country reigns supreme and punches way above its weight.
This is a nation where the sport defines their identity. With a state the size of Washington and a population of only 3 million, they have won the World Cup twice - more than Spain, France, the Netherlands, and England. They've won the Copa America 15 times. No other country has more. They produce quality superstar footballers like Cavani, Godin, Forlan, and Suarez. The only reason they're not in the top 4 or 5 is blatant ignorance and national pride for lesser countries.
I am from Mexico, and even I acknowledge that Brazil is the best, so no, my comment is not biased by where I am from. Even my mom agrees that Brazil is the best. I write this to let you know that while it may be true that Brazil has won the most world titles and comes out superior in almost everything they do, Mexico isn't far behind, perhaps a close seventh. If only we didn't have bad luck, but we keep trying, and that's what matters. We're going to give Brazil a run for its money. You can count on that. I'm not dissing them, I'm only being patriotic.
I can't believe Mexico was ranked this low on the list. Watching how they make their goals is pretty fascinating. They may not be as good as Germany or Portugal, but they still excel in soccer. Plus, they have Chicharito, who is one of the best players. Often, people only like Cristiano Ronaldo because of his looks and not his skill.
Mexico definitely needs to be ranked above Uruguay. Sure, Uruguay has great footballers, but their talent pool is much smaller, and their league is practically non-existent. Now, I don't agree with the rest of this list. Colombia and Chile need to be ranked much higher.
Okay, I may have voted for Italy and commented for them (the comment that talks about Andrea Pirlo and Gianluigi Buffon being in their thirties), but I am American and I think that the US is a rising star in the football, soccer universe. Wait a few years, and the Empire (Star Wars reference - laugh out loud) won't be the only thing striking back.
America is growing in soccer skill and soccer fans. As soccer is becoming more popular in America, we are getting better as a country. America is capable of a lot in the soccer world. Watch out, Europe - America has talent.
The most dominant international soccer team of all time (men or women) is the USA women. They have never finished worse than third in a World Cup. Therefore, the USA is the greatest soccer nation.
At this moment in time, Belgium is without a doubt a top 10 national team. Lukaku, Mirallas, Benteke, Hazard, Dembele, De Bruyne, Witsel, Fellaini, Vermaelen, Kompany, Courtois... The team is absolutely loaded, and they're bound to have young Man Utd stud Januzaj opt to join them. All young, all class players, bound for great things in the coming years.
Simply and very undoubtedly the best team at this moment. I hope there will be many years to come being 1st, and I hope they will beat France in the Nations finals!
Only 13th? Better than the Netherlands and France at the moment. For such a small country, they have amazingly good players!
Colombia is a really good team. They deserve to be ranked higher. It is unfair because when someone thinks of soccer, they think of Brazil or Argentina. Colombia is a strong new team and deserves more attention.
The whole country lives and breathes soccer! Although they've only won once, they are currently #3 in the world. They definitely deserve a spot here.
They were 5th in the World Cup. Venezuela didn't even qualify, and we were 2nd in the qualification table.
Chile plays better soccer than many other teams in the world. How is Colombia ahead of Chile? Please, stick to making empanadas. Only a couple of years ago, you were last in qualifying, and now you guys think you can play. Win a Copa America against Argentina, and then you can speak. You lost 2-1 versus Brazil. We tied 1-1 and lost in penalties. You guys don't have the same level of play as Chile.
Chile, what a team! Their football is absolutely awesome to watch.
Chile has the most attendees per capita to international matches when playing at home. Chile had the whole Brazil team praying during the penalties, in their home, in the knockout!
Alexis - Arsenal
Vidal - Juventus
Bravo - Barcelona
Vargas - Napoli
Isla - Juventus
Medel - Sevilla
Hosted in '62, finished in 3rd place though.
Canada, Pakistan, US, better than Chile? Are you serious? Lmao
Croatia is currently 7th in the world, took 3rd in the World Cup in 1998, has only 4 million people, and boasts 160 goals overall. Croatia is also undefeated against Italy.
For 4,250,000 people, Croatia has world-class players and can beat any team. They are an underrated team and have the potential to do big things.
Croatia's football team was awesome in the 2018 World Cup. Despite the fact that they lost in the final, Croatia made history!
Japan has a huge capital city called Tokyo, other cities in Japan include Fukuoka, Hiroshima, Osaka, Nagoya and Sendai. It's close to South Korea,... read more
Japan actually has amazing soccer teams. Their men's national team has Kagawa and Honda, who are great players. Their women's team also recently won the World Cup. They are definitely better than the Faroe Islands and Sudan. Japan should be in the top 15 or top 20.
Japan is awesome. They almost beat Belgium in Russia 2018, the women's team won in 2011, and with players like Honda, Kagawa, and Okazaki, they clearly deserve to be here. However, I did not expect them to be this high up.
I love the Japanese team.
Australia is the best. The Brisbane Roar beat the Spanish Villarreal, and Spain is all the way up there. We won the Asian Cup and only lost to Italy because of a fake trip. We also have a great sporting background and have league, Union, and AFL to give us practice.
The only reason they didn't get to the World Cup final is that Italy cheated by faking a trip.
Australia won the Asian Cup and tied with Germany in the World Cup friendly matches. The Aussies are one of the best at soccer.
North Korea's population as of February 18th, 2017 is 25,360,273.
North Korea is the third most... read more
North Korea has the best team in everything, and that's a fact. Glory to the greatest leader.
If they won against America, that would be doomsday for you.
North Korea is the best Korea.
India's population is 1.3 billion, and while many people like cricket, there is also a significant craze for football. Fifty percent of India likes cricket, whereas 41% likes football. No matter that India's rank is 150 in international football, any foreigner should visit and then see the craze in India for football. Cricket is the most played, and football is the second most played sport in India.
They will win every day, I tell you, and they won't lose. They'll beat the mighty and undefeated Brazil in their socks and will be the champions of the world that nobody can ever beat again. Yo, Sampan Chaudhuri.
The craze for soccer is spreading throughout the country.
South Korea has made it to the World Cup 9 times, the previous 8 consecutively. South Korea is Asia's most successful soccer nation. Their top finish was 4th in 2002, and they beat Poland, Portugal, Italy, and Spain, and tied with the USA. They have beaten Spain once by penalty kicks, tied 2-2 while down 2-0 with 5 minutes left, and have come back from 3-0 against Germany to score 2 goals in 1996. They have beaten Ivory Coast, Scotland, England, and won the bronze medal at the London Olympics. They produced the German Bundesliga's legendary goal scorer Cha-Bum Keun (Cha-Boom!), and have had players in Europe for a couple of decades now. Their arch-rival in Asia is Japan. However, historically, Korea has won the overwhelming majority of matches. The problem was that Asian football rarely produced many challenges for South Korea, and making it to the world stage was almost a given. Now that Japan and Australia are stepping up their game, and Iran has resurged as a soccer power in Asia, this will only help South Korea and raise the level of Asian Football even further.
Why is it so low on the list? They are amazing. Way better than some of these other teams. Let's go, Ticos!
It must be under rank 20...
Turkey is a growing soccer power. They already finished third in the world. They have so many talented players who are playing all over for the world's best teams.
Turkey is better than Canada, India, and all of the teams ranked above Turkey on page one. They deserve to be eleventh on the list.
They ranked third in the 2002 World Cup!
I think I'm blind. I did not just see Sweden ranked so low... Does anybody here watch football or even know who Zlatan Ibrahimović is?
Sweden has one of the best players in the world and used to have one of the greatest teams ever! They shouldn't be ranked this low.
Sweden should be ranked above India, the Faroe Islands, Sudan, etc.
One of the underdogs for Euro 2016, should definitely be higher on the list!
With the super coach Marco Rossi, Hungary is playing well, I have to admit.
One of the old powerhouses of football, not so much these days.