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Top 50 players of the World Cup

Mar 01

Lionel Messi or Wayne Rooney? Cristiano Ronaldo or Kaka? Iker Casillas or Gianluigi Buffon?

Whatever your choices, we can all agree that the world's biggest sporting event can't arrive soon enough.

South Africa and Mexico kick off the World Cup on June 11, but until then we can only count down the days until the tournament begins. We're going to do that with 101 different stories running over 101 days -- call it World Cup 101.

We begin with the top 50 players of the World Cup, a consensus ranking as determined by a panel of 23 contributors to ESPN's soccer coverage. Disagree with our list? Click here to vote for your own.

Profiles written by Leander Schaerlaeckens. All statistics through March 1.

Players 26 through 50

Click here for players 26 through 50