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How many countries in the world have a footballer as their best ever male sportsman?


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For France I'm picking Zidane and Loeb and saying Zidane is better. Realistically he's probably one of the top ten footballers there have ever been, and I think that sets him apart from all of the competition.

For Germany I think it's a fight between Muller, Beckenbauer, Matthaus and Lahm for their best ever player. It probably depends on whether you prefer fullbacks, centre backs, midfielders or strikers. 

Outside of football much of Germany's top level sporting success seems to have come from women, but they have a few successful men. Dirk Nowitzki - Wikipedia is the highest scoring foreign-born NBA player in history and won pretty much everything you could win there. Boris Becker - Wikipedia won multiple tennis Grand Slams and an Olympic gold in doubles. Michael Schumacher - Wikipedia won seven Formula 1 world championships and dominated the sport in a way which hadn't been seen before. My personal vote is honestly for Schumacher over whichever footballer wins, and I'm not even trying to be biased towards motor sport. 

Ghana are one of Africa's most successful countries at a national and individual level, and Abedi Pele - Wikipedia is the most highly regarded of their players. 

For the non-footballers, Ignisious Gaisah - Wikipedia won a few major medals in the long jump. Azumah Nelson - Wikipedia was a world champion boxer at two weights, and won gold medals in the Commonwealth and African games. I think Nelson wins the non-footballer but he doesn't beat Pele, a Champions League winner and one of the best African players of all time.

Gibraltar are largely a waste of time. Their best player is probably Liam Walker - Wikipedia who's played in Israel, Spain and England.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Gibraltar don't have the most extensive sporting heritage. I think the footballer wins this one by default, but if anyone has any specialist knowledge then I'm all ears.

Greece have quite a few options for the best player, with several from their Euro 2004 squad as well as earlier in their history. Lots of their best players seem to be quite interchangeable in terms of overall legacy, so my vote is going to be for Giorgos Karagounis - Wikipedia. Even though he doesn't have the kind of honours list that a lot of the other Greeks have, he has the most caps for the national team and was their best player throughout the most successful period in the national team's history.

Outside of football, Pyrros Dimas - Wikipedia won gold in three consecutive Olympics and world championships in weightlifting and is their most successful Olympian. Eleftherios Petrounias - Wikipedia is a four time winner of Greek Male Athlete of the Year with extensive success in gymnastics. Giannis Antetokounmpo - Wikipedia was an NBA champion and finals MVP this year and looks to be a decent shot for winner here in the future, with Stefanos Tsitsipas - Wikipedia also being a candidate in tennis. For the time being I think Karagounis wins, but both the footballer and overall best here are quite up for debate.

Grenada sees us back in the midst of Caribbean diddies. Shalrie Joseph - Wikipedia had a long MLS career. That's about it. He doesn't have as many appearances or goals as some players, but those who do all play in the Caribbean. There's not much to go on.

Outside of football Kirani James - Wikipedia is a 400m runner who seems to have won gold at every level he's ever competed at, so it's an easy win for him.

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not trying to be a hipster/contrarian, honestly, but my first thought for Germany was Miroslav Klose - is he not still the record holder for most goals at a world cup/euro's?

edit: I had a wee look at Wiki; top scorer for Germany (71 goals is a mighty haul, even if some of them are against jobber sides) and world cup record scorer. Being ahead of Original Ronaldo for world cup goals is a hell of a feat and being their top scorer to boot, so imo he takes some beating as their top sportsman. I won't go full Pep if anyone disagrees with me, so feel free to do so.

I vaguely mind that world cup with the 5 headers, pretty sure 4 of them were against Saudi Arabia alone.

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Edited by Thistle_do_nicely
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20 hours ago, Miguel Sanchez said:

For France I'm picking Zidane and Loeb and saying Zidane is better. Realistically he's probably one of the top ten footballers there have ever been, and I think that sets him apart from all of the competition.

 

 

i'd argue Alain Prost could be in with a shout of being the best sportman in france, but why i really quoted your post was to say, no fucking way is Zidane a top 10 player of all time, top tier yes, but the most overrated player in that top tier

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2 hours ago, Thistle_do_nicely said:

not trying to be a hipster/contrarian, honestly, but my first thought for Germany was Miroslav Klose - is he not still the record holder for most goals at a world cup/euro's?

edit: I had a wee look at Wiki; top scorer for Germany (71 goals is a mighty haul, even if some of them are against jobber sides) and world cup record scorer. Being ahead of Original Ronaldo for world cup goals is a hell of a feat and being their top scorer to boot, so imo he takes some beating as their top sportsman. I won't go full Pep if anyone disagrees with me, so feel free to do so.

I vaguely mind that world cup with the 5 headers, pretty sure 4 of them were against Saudi Arabia alone.

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Klose was a good player and a great goalscorer, but I don’t think he’s in the same league as guys like Beckenbauer, Muller, Matthaus, etc, who played at the top level of club football for a long, long time, in addition to their international accolades.

Klose’s World Cup record of averaging 4 goals per tournament for four tournaments is exceptional. But as an all-round player and in terms of overall career accomplishments, he’s not in the top tier.

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3 minutes ago, Turkmenbashi said:

Karagounis I would say is definitely not Greece greatest athlete. A number of the non-footballers listed are better options

Quite a few times a generic footballer has been picked over people who have won world championships or Olympic medals in their chosen sports. I don't really understand the methodology.

Greece the stand out example though.

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17 hours ago, Turkmenbashi said:

Karagounis I would say is definitely not Greece greatest athlete. A number of the non-footballers listed are better options

It's Leonidas of Rhodes, not some ex Fulham player

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On 07/08/2021 at 13:14, DeeTillEhDeh said:

What about Bernard Hinault?

5 wins in the Tour de France.

3 wins in the Giro.

2 wins in the Vuelta.

42 stage wins in those e Grand Tours.

World Road Race Champion.

I could go on.

 

On 13/08/2021 at 08:02, DeeTillEhDeh said:

Discussing French sportsmen and you miss out Bernard Hinault, one of the greatest cyclists of all time.

 

On 06/08/2021 at 14:14, Miguel Sanchez said:

France's best ever footballer is Zinedine Zidane - Wikipedia. Old people might argue Michel Platini - Wikipedia but Zidane gets my vote. 

France have one of the longest lists of success in other sports so I'm going to pick out what I think/can work out as the best for each. If anyone has any other suggestions or a preference, fire away.

Bernard Hinault - Wikipedia won 5 Tours de France, 3 Italian and 2 Spanish Tours de France.

I put your cyclist from the black and white days in. France aren't short on people from a range of sports, it's not a slight on anyone here to fall short. He's still not as good as Zidane.

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I'll be honest, I was getting a bit bored the last time I was filling these in and I didn't really look up Greece that much. It's worth pointing out that as generic as Karagounis was as a player, there's not really much else to offer that's better. Purely based on romanticism I'm going to pick Vasilis Hatzipanagis - Wikipedia, but I suppose they can't really compare to a three time Olympic champion in Dimas.

For Germany I'm picking Beckenbauer and Schumacher and putting Schumacher above him.

Guam are shite and their current captain has the most appearances and goals, so step forward Jason Cunliffe - Wikipedia.

For the non-footballers they seem to be a first in all of the countries I've looked at. When you google "best Guam sportsmen" you get a few links to Guam-based news websites that list a bunch of people who are among the greatest players in various sports... in Guam, and nowhere else. I don't really want to list someone based on their high school sports career DECADE’S MULTI-SPORT ATHLETES: #1 DE’AUNDRE CRUZ – GSPN – Guam Sports Network so if anyone can offer anything meaningful here, go for it.

Guatemala have Oscar Sánchez (footballer, born 1955) - Wikipedia who was named their best player of the 20th century. Carlos Ruiz (Guatemalan footballer) - Wikipedia has been at a similar level for the 21st century, with a distinguished MLS career.

Érick Barrondo - Wikipedia won Guatemala's only Olympic medal with silver in the 20km race walk in 2012. Despite now being 30 he seems to only have competed for about five years, with a gold and silver in the 2011 Pan American Games being his only other major successes. Is this better than Ruiz?

Guinea aren't one of Africa's best options and they don't have much to offer. Titi Camara - Wikipedia spent most of his career in the French and English top leagues. Pascal Feindouno - Wikipedia spent ten years in France and the rest of his career in tinpot leagues, and has an impressive goals to appearances ratio. Naby Keïta - Wikipedia is currently at Liverpool and aged 26 is a decent shout for winning this in a few years. I'm probably inclined to pick him now actually, since he's won more than the others. 

Unless I'm missing something obvious I can't find any notable non-footballers for Guinea. Certainly not on the level of a Champions League winner.

Guinea-Bissau ae much worse and currently have a very young squad. Their current squad seems to have someone from Raith Rovers in it, so that's the level we're dealing with. They also seem to have a problem with people representing other countries. PSG and Portugal right back Danilo is from there, Barcelona teenager Ansu Fati is from there but represents Spain, so they're out. Jonas Mendes - Wikipedia is a goalkeeper with the most appearances for them, and wikipedia alleges he's been Guinea-Bissau's player of the year five times. As good a choice as any. 

For the non-footballers, Augusto Midana - Wikipedia was a six-time African champion in freestyle wrestling, which seems good enough for me. 

Guyana's best players seem to mostly be domestic-based. Walter Moore (footballer, born 1984) - Wikipedia leads them in appearances, playing as far afield as Finland and Kazakhstan. They seem to have a few teenagers playing for English Championship sides now though, so this could change in the future.

Either way it's going to be an easy win for the non-footballer. Vivian Harris - Wikipedia was a world champion boxer in the early 2000s. So was Wayne Braithwaite - Wikipedia. Guyana is part of the West Indies in cricket and Shivnarine Chanderpaul - Wikipedia has lots of cricket numbers. Same for Clive Lloyd - Wikipedia. I think the cricketers beat the boxers here, but I'm not sure which should get top spot.

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You're trying to get my head to explode by not picking Giannis for Greece eh.

Tuck was a low level UFC fighter but making it into the promotion is a good achievement. 

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2 hours ago, Miguel Sanchez said:

I'll be honest, I was getting a bit bored the last time I was filling these in and I didn't really look up Greece that much. It's worth pointing out that as generic as Karagounis was as a player, there's not really much else to offer that's better. Purely based on romanticism I'm going to pick Vasilis Hatzipanagis - Wikipedia, but I suppose they can't really compare to a three time Olympic champion in Dimas.

For Germany I'm picking Beckenbauer and Schumacher and putting Schumacher above him.

Guam are shite and their current captain has the most appearances and goals, so step forward Jason Cunliffe - Wikipedia.

For the non-footballers they seem to be a first in all of the countries I've looked at. When you google "best Guam sportsmen" you get a few links to Guam-based news websites that list a bunch of people who are among the greatest players in various sports... in Guam, and nowhere else. I don't really want to list someone based on their high school sports career DECADE’S MULTI-SPORT ATHLETES: #1 DE’AUNDRE CRUZ – GSPN – Guam Sports Network so if anyone can offer anything meaningful here, go for it.

Guatemala have Oscar Sánchez (footballer, born 1955) - Wikipedia who was named their best player of the 20th century. Carlos Ruiz (Guatemalan footballer) - Wikipedia has been at a similar level for the 21st century, with a distinguished MLS career.

Érick Barrondo - Wikipedia won Guatemala's only Olympic medal with silver in the 20km race walk in 2012. Despite now being 30 he seems to only have competed for about five years, with a gold and silver in the 2011 Pan American Games being his only other major successes. Is this better than Ruiz?

Guinea aren't one of Africa's best options and they don't have much to offer. Titi Camara - Wikipedia spent most of his career in the French and English top leagues. Pascal Feindouno - Wikipedia spent ten years in France and the rest of his career in tinpot leagues, and has an impressive goals to appearances ratio. Naby Keïta - Wikipedia is currently at Liverpool and aged 26 is a decent shout for winning this in a few years. I'm probably inclined to pick him now actually, since he's won more than the others. 

Unless I'm missing something obvious I can't find any notable non-footballers for Guinea. Certainly not on the level of a Champions League winner.

Guinea-Bissau ae much worse and currently have a very young squad. Their current squad seems to have someone from Raith Rovers in it, so that's the level we're dealing with. They also seem to have a problem with people representing other countries. PSG and Portugal right back Danilo is from there, Barcelona teenager Ansu Fati is from there but represents Spain, so they're out. Jonas Mendes - Wikipedia is a goalkeeper with the most appearances for them, and wikipedia alleges he's been Guinea-Bissau's player of the year five times. As good a choice as any. 

For the non-footballers, Augusto Midana - Wikipedia was a six-time African champion in freestyle wrestling, which seems good enough for me. 

Guyana's best players seem to mostly be domestic-based. Walter Moore (footballer, born 1984) - Wikipedia leads them in appearances, playing as far afield as Finland and Kazakhstan. They seem to have a few teenagers playing for English Championship sides now though, so this could change in the future.

Either way it's going to be an easy win for the non-footballer. Vivian Harris - Wikipedia was a world champion boxer in the early 2000s. So was Wayne Braithwaite - Wikipedia. Guyana is part of the West Indies in cricket and Shivnarine Chanderpaul - Wikipedia has lots of cricket numbers. Same for Clive Lloyd - Wikipedia. I think the cricketers beat the boxers here, but I'm not sure which should get top spot.

Shiv Chanderpaul has the better stats but Sir Clive Lloyd united the disparate factions in West Indian Cricket & led the side through a highly successful period in tests alongside 2 World Cup victories so he wins it for me.

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You're trying to get my head to explode by not picking Giannis for Greece eh.

I'm with you on that one.

Lloyd should be the pick over Chanderpaul, but the latter has a far cooler name so gets my vote.
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