We have covered the Nike and Adidas Best XI teams over the past few weeks and now we will take a look at Puma’s. Considering all the hype surrounding big name players that the big two soccer brands seem to get, Puma still have managed to get their fair share of quality players. It’s also quite impressive that Puma’s best XI has players from every big league in Europe (Ligue 1, Premier League, La Liga, Bundesliga, and Serie A
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: The obvious pick at goalkeeper was Gigi Buffon who captains both Juventus and Italy. He is known to be one of the best players Puma has sponsored, after all his leadership and goal saving skills have awed many watching the shotstopper. He won the 2006 World Cup with Italy and also was a finalist in the 2012 Euro Championship.
Note: To make it easier to fit in the the pool of talented midfielders Puma has I decided to use a 3-5-2 formation instead of the normal 4-4-2.
Defenders: If you want to play with three in the back you will need three strong, hard tackling center backs. If this Puma team were to play with four in the back the players would be Giorgio Chiellini, Dante, Nemanja Vidic, and Gaël Clichy. However, Clichy is the odd one out here as his left back position with Manchester City doesn’t fit a three defender formation well. Giorgio Chiellini plays on Juventus and Italy alongside Puma keeper Gigi Buffon- there must be great chemistry between those two players being on the same club and country. A slightly late bloomer, Dante is considered to be one of Europe’s finest central defenders because of his strength and tackling. Manchester United defender Nemanja Vidic rounds out the three because of his talent and power in the air.
Midfielders: By playing with three in the back, it allows this Puma team to overload the midfield and make use of their talent. New Puma signing Santi Cazorla and Cesc Fàbregas are the central play makers on this Puma team because of their attacking abilities. Another attacking midfielder is Borussia Dortmund’s Marco Reus who is known for his versatility and speed which helped Dortmund reach the Champions League Final last year. Also long time Puma wearer Michael Carrick has had success with Manchester United in his Puma Kings; not an easy task as Manchester United has a number of weapons in midfield to choose from. Finishing off the Puma midfield is Yaya Touré, who can play both offensively and defensively because of his physical power and passing talents. Arsenal player Mikel Arteta was also considered for this team.
Forwards: Although Mario Gomez left the strike force of Puma, they still have a lethal duo upfront in Radamel Falcao and Sergio Aguero. Falcao is still in-form after making his move AS Monaco and his talent in the air will give Ligue 1 defenders something to worry about. Aguero brings with him strength and control to this Puma team that also helped Manchester City win the Premier League title in 2012. In fact it was Aguero with the late game heroics that won City the title in the last match of the season. Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud is also notable because of his physical style of play. And keep an eye on aging legend Thierry Henry as he is still plying his trade in MLS with Pumas on his feet.
What the players currently wear!
I have to admit that I personally feel that Puma has a very strong group of players here – they definitely are a strong presence in the boot world and their players have a lot to do with that. Because I admit that if a well known pro player approves of them then it makes the boot that much more appealing! It’s also interesting that Puma only has three silos while Nike and Adidas both have 4. One positive of having less silos is you have more players wearing your three main boots!
What did you think of the Puma Best XI? Who is Puma’s star player in midfield… Fabregas, Cazorla, or Reus? Let us know in the comments below!