I had an argument with some of my colleagues about a player being tagged world class, and we got into it. Personally, I feel the tag world class has been overused and sometimes we simply just say a player is world class after one or two seasons of good football.
I want to say though, that a player is having an amazing couple of season doesn’t mean he doesn’t have the potential to be world class. That I think the player is not world class doesn’t mean the player is not a really good player or generational talent.
That being said, I have decided to list the 5 attributes a player needs to have before I can label them world class. You can disagree with me and that is fine, my word should not be taken for it.
Also, I can agree with you if you are really convincing.
- Consistency: To be called a world class player, you have to be consistent for at least 4 seasons. I am not saying keep having explosive numbers, but be in the conversation, be a team player and don’t drop stinkers for a long period of time. You should be a decider for your team at least for 4 seasons, that is consistency.
- Big Game player: You turn up when it matters the most. You are not a player that hides during the big games but someone that is ready to take on challenges, make things happen when your team needs bailing out. There are lots of good players that are average in games like this and cannot withstand the pressure.
- Recognition/Accolades: You need to have awards to show for it. Be consistently receiving awards year after year and let people know that you are not just a one season wonder. A good player has a good season, a great player has more than one good season.
- Impact: Your impact on the team should transcend beyond when you are with the ball, your presence on the team sheet should send shivers down the spine of opponents. Rival fans should be happy when you get substituted or go down injured. That is how to know that a player is world class.
- The X factor: A world class player should always bring something extraordinary to the table. It might not be the obvious thing like an assist or a goal, it could be repossession of the ball like Kante, a sweet cross like De Bruyne, a last minute clearance like Dias or Van Dijk, or a freekick in the last minute like Ronaldo or Messi. Something that can turn the game on its head instantly.
So, before a player qualifies to be called world class in my books, he has to have all these attributes for at least 4 years. There are many amazing players and they don’t have to be called world class before we can admit that they are great players. There are great players and there are players that kick start the GOAT conversation.
What is your opinion on this matter?