How do you find out what the best brand in soccer is?
Of course it is hard to tell by their product, as everyone has their own preferences. But what about by the players? It is easier to pick the best players because it is hard to argue with in-game performance and stats. So, which company has the best group of sponsored players? We will take a look at the best XI players over the next few weeks that all have something in common, their sponsor, with the intent of determining which squad makes out best.
To kick things off, it is the brand with the three stripes – Adidas.
Note: this is a personal opinion piece and these are the players we believe are the best – if you think there is a player that should/shouldn’t be on it, let us know in the comment section below!
Goalkeeper: Iker Casillas gets my nod, but I would also be confident using a number of other goalies on the pitch – Petr Cech and Salvatore Sirigu are both close contenders. The Spanish shot-stopper captains both Real Madrid and Spain, with which he has won both the World Cup and the European Championship. He is also the most capped goalkeeper of all time in the UEFA Champions League.
Defenders: A center back pairing of two Borussia Dortmund players anchor this teams defense. Neven Subotić and Mats Hummels both played key parts to lead Borussia Dortmund to the Champions League Final. Mats Hummels has even been linked to clubs outside Germany; Chelsea, Barcelona, and other big clubs like Arsenal all have had reported interest in him. Adidas has a large pool of talented outside backs including Leighton Baines, Dani Alves, Jordi Alba, Phillip Lahm, and Marcelo. Lahm and Marcelo are two choices hard to argue with though, Lahm captains both Bayern Munich and Germany, and Marcelo has been a big part of both Real Madrid and Brazil’s success.
Midfielders: Pulling the strings in center midfield are the Spanish and German veterans Xavi and Bastian Schweinsteiger. It will be hard to get the ball off this team as they both excel on ball control and passing. But don’t fall asleep watching the two midfield maestros run up the team’s possession percentage. The adidas Best XI has speed on the wings with Arjen Robben and Gareth Bale, both are known for their dribbling skills and play making abilities on the wings. The big transfer story of the summer has been the will he/won’t he (Gareth Bale) leave Spurs. Real Madrid has targeted Gareth Bale but their £85m offer was a little ways off from the Spurs price tag of £100m.
Forwards: Goals will come easy for this team, they are led upfront by four-time ballon d’or winner Lionel Messi, wearer of his own personalized pair of F50 adiZero – “Light Up the Pitch“. Playing alongside the Argentine superstar is premier league goal machine Robin Van Persie. They both possess a creative type of play, and they are both free kick specialists. For those familiar with RVP’s choice of footwear, he was a long time wearer of the Adidas adiPower Predator, but he recently made a profitable switch to the F50 adiZero, although his pair does boast a custom soleplate!
This team is loaded with technical play makers that all are good passers. Their playing style would likely be picking apart the other team with crisp passes and the occasional ball over the top for their speedy wingers to collect. I feel that this is a solid all-around team that doesn’t have many weaknesses.
What the players currently wear!
F50 adiZero – (6) Lionel Messi, Robin van Persie, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Marcelo, Gareth Bale, Arjen Robben
Predator LZ – (3) Iker Casillas, Mats Hummels, Xavi
adiPure 11Pro – (1) Phillip Lahm
Nitrocharge 1.0 – (1) Neven Subotić
Adidas has at least one of their best XI players in each of the four silos, so if they played an actual game all of the silos would be on display. If you compare those numbers to the popularity of the boots it is relatively similar. The F50 is the most popular boot that adidas currently has. The Predator LZ has its supporters and although there was a lot of hype surrounding the Nitrocharge, there aren’t as many big name players that wear them as the LZ.
What do you think of the Adidas Best XI? Who would you want taking your free kicks… Messi, Bale, or Van Persie?