Football is a very interesting sport, not only because it is popular, but also for its high level of competition. Football is one of the top sports that has players names celebrated across the world, and in as much as there are so many talented or potentially talented footballers, a good player is always popular among his club fans.
So many football stars have emerged, some quickly noticed from the point of potentials while others became known after they have become established. Messi, Rooney and Ronaldo are perfect examples of players who were spotted in their early days, while Zinedane Zidane, Salah etc became known when he have become an established player.
Some of the early spotted potentially great players lived up to expectation while others were not privileged. Below are some of the top players who failed to live up to the hypes despite being touted to become one of the greatest footballers in the world.
5. Dos Santos (Mexico, Former Barcelona):
Giovanni Dos Santos, born 11 May 1989 is a Mexican professional footballer who currently plays for Major League Soccer club LA Galaxy and the Mexico national team. A versatile forward, dos Santos can play as an attacking midfielder, winger and secondary striker.
Dos Santos began his football career at a very young age, being recruited by Spanish club Barcelona and played for their B team until age 18. He made his way up the ranks, eventually playing for the senior squad, making his debut in 2007. That year, he was named by World Soccer Magazine as one of the “Top 50 Most Exciting Teen Footballers
He used to be a magician, his dribbling skills were likened to that of Ronaldinho. He was touted to become a direct replacement for the Brazilian superstar at Barcelona, but he failed to make the starting line up, before being shipped out to Tottenham. Since then, he has failed to live up to the hypes.
4. Muniain (Spainish, Atl Bilbao):
Wanted by Manchester United’s Sir Alex Ferguson on several occasions, Iker Muniain is a real Spanish talent. Due to his style of play and stature, he was dubbed “the Spanish Messi” by the media.
He spent most of his career with Athletic Bilbao after debuting in 2009 as their youngest player in a competitive match, making over 300 appearances for the club and reaching the finals of the Copa del Rey and Europa League in 2012.
Despite being wanted by most of the top teams in Europe, Muniain remains in Atl. Bilbao even though he was not able to achieve anything team wise and also individually.
3. Pato (Brazil, Former AC Milan):
The Brazilian who now plies his football trade in China was likened to fellow Brazilian and former World Footballer of the Year, Kaka.
Pato began his career as a youth player for Internacional in 2000, making his debut in 2006 at age 16. He went on to score 12 goals in 27 appearances and helped them win the 2006 FIFA Club World Cup. In August 2007, he signed for Italian side Milan.
In 2009, he scored 18 goals in 42 matches in all competitions, which earned him both the Golden Boy and Serie A Young Footballer of the Year awards. Pato was touted to become to top player in the future but his career was marred by serious injuries. He could not live up to the hypes in Milan and in essence had to move clubs such that he had a short but unsuccessful loan stint at Chelsea.
2. Anderson (Brazil, Former Man United):
Once a Golden Ball award winner after he featured in the 2005 FIFA U-17 World Championship where Brazil took second place, Anderson could not achieve his full potential despite moving to Manchester United in 2008.
A box-to-box midfielder, Anderson’s strength and good vision had made him stand out among his pairs. Although, he mostly delivers anytime he pulls the United shirt but his career would have been more blistering if he had not been consistently sidelined by career threatening injuries.
1. Robinho (Brazil, Former Madrid):
Robinho used to be up there with the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Messi while at Real Madrid. Robinho remains one of the greatest talents that hailed from Brazilian football club, Santos.
In 1999, at 15 years of age, Robinho was picked by Brazil legend Pelé as his heir apparent and went on to lead Santos FC to their first Campeonato Brasileiro title since Pelé himself played for the club.
He had a successful stint at Real Madrid but his problem started when he switched to Man City following an intense speculations linking Man United’s star Ronaldo with his club.
Robinho had an unsuccessful spell at Man City and went further to AC Milan, where also he could not also live up to the hype based on his potential talent. Robinho could have been consistently competing with the top players if he had lived up to his hype