Dutch Legend Snubs Ronaldo, Messi, Names 3 Best Players in Football

Dutch Legend Snubs Ronaldo, Messi, Names 3 Best Players in Football

Edwin Kiplagat
updated at October 27, 2023 at 11:49 AM
In this article:
Kylian Mbappé logo
Paris Saint Germain (PSG) logoFFrance logo
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K. D. Bruyne
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  • Dutch legend Ronald De Boer has named the three best players in the world
  • Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo's dominance is coming to an end
  • Kylian Mbappe and Kylian Mbappe are expected to take over

Nothing excites football more than the "Who is the best layer in the world" question. With Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi edging towards retirement, new players are in contention for that crown.

Dutch legend Ronaldo De Boer has named the three best players in the world, but the two icons are absent from the list.

Kylian Mbappe, Erling Haaland, Kevin De Bruyne, Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Ballon d'Or, World Cup
Kylian Mbappe is considered the best player alongside Erling Haaland. Photo by Shaun Botterill.
Source: Getty Images

In the last decade, either Messi or Ronaldo was considered the best player in the world. However, their dominance is coming to an end, and the likes of Kylian Mbappe and Erling Haaland are taking over.

Messi and Ronaldo won the Ballon d'Or from 2008 until 2021. Luka Modric won it in 2018 after leading Croatia to the World Cup final.

Messi is the favourite to win it this year again, but it is surely going to be the last time any of the two legends win the prestigious award.

Ronaldo is 38 and is still going strong in Saudi Arabia, while Messi is making his mark in the MLS.

De Boer's top three players

Paris Saint-Germain's Kylian Mbappe is regarded as the best player in the world, alongside Manchester City's Haaland.

De Boer, who played for Barcelona and Ajax, recently named his three best players in the world. He picked Mbappe, Kevin De Bruyne and Haaland, per ESPN.

De Bruyne and Haaland won the treble with Man City last season, while Mbappe won his 6th Ligue 1 title. He bagged only the second hat-trick in a World Cup final in December.

Here's how their 2023/24 stats in club football compare, per Transfermarkt.




Kylian Mbappe



Erling Haaland



Kevin De Bruyne



De Bruyne's goals will be lower since he primarily plays in midfield. This season, Haaland has scored 11 goals, while Mbappe has scored 10. Haaland is in contention to win his first Ballon d'Or this year. Can he beat Messi?

Mbappe backed to win 2023 Ballon d'Or

Sports Brief earlier reported on PSG president Nasser Nasser Al-Khelaifi backing Mbapope to win the 2023 Ballon d'Or award.

Al-Khelaifi believes Mbappe is currently the best player in the world and cannot see a better winner for the Ballon d’Or this year than his PSG forward.

Lionel Messi is the favourite to win the award ahead of Mbappe and Haaland.

Edwin Kiplagat photo
Edwin Kiplagat
Edwin Kiplagat has five years of experience in journalism working as a Sports Editor at Africa Insight Communications and ESPN. Edwin Kiplagat is a Bachelor's Degree holder in journalism from the Multimedia University of Kenya.