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Revealed: The world's best dribblers since 2006

Revealed: Messi, CR7, Hazard make list of top 10 dribblers since 2006

November 19, 2019 By Ali M.
We now know who is the best dribbler in world football since Opta records began in 2006/07.

Lionel Messi is known as the king of dribbling among any other thing but one might wonder whether this title is deserved. A recent statistic proves that not only is the Argentine’s recognition merited, but it’s merited by a mile.

Squawka recently compiled a list of the players with the most completed take-ons since Opta records began back in 2006/07. The top 10 contains a few surprise names but for the most part, all the expected names make the cut.

Leo, Neymar, Cristiano, Hazard, and Ribery all feature but the number one spot could go to only one man and that man is none other than the Barcelona icon. The five-time Ballon d’Or winner has completed a whopping 1,880 take-ons, proving that he can beat defenders like no other.

Another impressive thing about the Argentine boasts a staggering 660 more take-ons than the second-placed player on this list, Hazard. The former Chelsea superstar, who now plies his trade at Real Madrid, might find it difficult to catch up with Messi given his huge lead but the Belgian can take huge pride in being the closest to Leo.

Hazard is the only other player besides La Pulga to manage 1000+ successful take-ons. Franck Ribery completes the top three with 939.

Neymar, a player known for his flare and dribbling, surprisingly comes in at 10th with 734. In fact, he is not even the number one Brazilian on this list, with Roberto Firmino (736) being ranked in the ninth spot. The Liverpool star is only one of two Premier League aces to make this list, the other being fourth-placed Sergio Aguero (832).

Hatem Ben Arfa, the skillful yet troublesome and ill-disciplined Frenchman, is seventh on the list with 770 completed take-ons while Andres Iniesta (739) follows him in eighth spot. Cristiano Ronaldo, Messi arch-rival in world football, trails the Argentine by over a 1000 and thus comes in fifth with only 816 dribbles.

When it comes to efficiency, Messi and Hazard rank second and third respectively among the top 10 players. This is due to their success rate, with the Argentine and Belgian stars completing 57.2% and 57.1% of their take-ons respectively. In this criteria, Iniesta emerges on top with his 60.9% success rate. Check out the top 10 list in full below.

  • Lionel Messi: 1,880 completed take-ons (57.2%)

  • Eden Hazard: 1,220 completed take-ons (57.1%)

  • Franck Ribery: 939 completed take-ons (47.9%)

  • Sergio Aguero: 832 completed take-ons (46.6%)

  • Cristiano Ronaldo: 816 completed take-ons (44%)

  • Joaquin: 798 completed take-ons (50.9%)

  • Hatem Ben Arfa: 770 completed take-ons (50.6%)

  • Andres Iniesta: 739 completed take-ons (60.9%)

  • Roberto Firmino: 736 completed take-ons (56.8%)

  • Neymar: 734 completed take-ons (50.2%)


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