GOAL 50 - POSITIONS 10-1
The Goal 50 counts down the world’s 50 best football players of 2016, featuring the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and Zlatan Ibrahimovic. Below you can find the stars who were selected from positions 10 to 1.
Chief editors and correspondents from Goal‘s 38 editions across the globe all cast their votes. Players were judged on their level of consistency over the past year, their big-game performances, footballing legacy and the success of their team at both club and international level.
#10 ZLATAN IBRAHIMOVIC | Manchester United & Sweden
The Swede has a wonderful sense of humour and a tremendous flair for hyperbole but it is hard to dispute his claim that he is ageing like a fine wine. Last season was the most prolific of his career, with Ibra racking up 50 goals in PSG's treble-winning campaign, while he wasted little time in winning over United fans by scoring four times in his first three games for his new club.
#09 GONZALO HIGUAIN | Juventus & Argentina
The striker's detractors believe that he misses big chances in big games yet this is a man who hit a hat-trick on the final day of last season to break the record for goals in a single Serie A season. Furthermore, when his critics piled on the pressure after he'd piled on the pounds following his €90m summer switch from Napoli to Juventus, he responded with seven goals in his first nine outings in all competitions for the Bianconeri.
#08 ROBERT LEWANDOWSKI | Bayern Munich & Poland
Any doubts over the striker's suitability to Pep Guardiola's tactics were blown away last season, with the 28-year-old becoming the first foreign player ever to score 30 goals in one Bundesliga campaign. Though a marked man at Euro 2016 - he suffered more fouls than any other player despite exiting at the quarter-final stage - he still managed a goal in his country's shootout loss to Portugal.
#07 RIYAD MAHREZ | Leicester City & Algeria
A player signed from Le Havre for €500,000 in 2014 was described as "priceless" by Foxes boss Claudio Ranieri last December and it's easy to understand why. With 17 Premier League goals and 10 assists, Mahrez was not only a worthy recipient of the 2015-16 PFA Players' Player of the Year award in April but also a most deserving Premier League title winner just a few days later. The highest ranked midfielder in the Goal 50.