ootball is love. Football is passion. I've followed football since I was a small kid, and since I was falling in love with it. My passion for my favourite teams remains as strong as ever. There were some great teams I remember fondly. No, I haven't been able to see all great teams, and I might miss some bloody obvious choices. The list is a purely subjective list, based on my opinion and my preference for football. However, I think that these fantastic teams also caused other people several happy moments and were instrumental in shaping football. Here are they:
Manchester United 1999
Many, many thing have been written about the most dramatic Champions League final ever, and the images of Solskjaer scoring the winner against Bayer Munich remain vivid. There might have been United teams that were playing more free-flowing football, and some of them won the league more easily. However, this team proved a very significant point for Ferguson as his fledglings represented the core of the team and they were crowned Champions of Europe, won the league in a dramatic fashion, and also added the FA Cup to the trophy cabinet. What a great team, and what great players!
Barcelona under Johann
Yes, I know. Barcelona under the leadership of Pep Guardiola were undisputed kings of the world football, and dismantling my beloved Manchester United twice in Champions League finals in 2009 and 2011 was probably the highest point of their excellence. I was never a supporter of Barcelona, but I respected their great teams and admired the way they approached football. However, before the greatness of Messi and co unfolded, a previous great Barcelona team under the tutelage of the Dutch master Johann Cruyff and a young Guardiola among their ranks played the best football on Earth. Their flair, style and grace was so amazing, it was impossible not to adore them.
AC Milan with Baresi and co
I wasn't a Milan fan either, but their greatest team featured some very great players and played excellent football. The Dutch trio is always mentioned, and the great Marco van Basten was one of the best strikers ever to grace a football pitch, but my favourite was probably the greatest defender of all times, Franco Baresi. He was versatile, elegant, cool and the great Milan team rarely conceded lots of goals. They were masters ofdefending, not just attacking, without the brutality associated with the Italian style of catenaccio. With the likes of Paulo Maldini, Billy Costacurta and Mauro Tassotti in the back four it was not as hard as some would imagine.
With money available, Lazio was able to assemble a very strong team, which draw praise from Sir Alex Ferguson after his United was defeated in the 1999 European Super Cup final. Lazio won a historic double in this season as they were able to add the scudetto and Coppa Italia to their relatively empty trophy cabinet. Their star players included the great Alessandro Nesta, and many others, such as Nedved, Salas, Boksic, Simeone or Veron. Roberto Mancini, who had remarkable success as manager, scored one of the greatest goals I've ever seen.
Honvéd in the 1980s
They say many things about the first love, but in this instance it proved to be lasting. Honvéd were and still are my No. 1 team. One of their strong periods was the 1980s when they frequently won the Hungarian league, and also provided the backbone of the Hungary national team that dismantled Brazil 3-0 in 1986. What happened at the World Cup in Mexico is another matter. This Honvéd was not nearly as strong as the great team in the 1950s consisting Puskás, Bozsik, Kocsis and the likes. However, they made me a supporter and I have great memories about that team.
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