Top five: No. 9s in world football (1)

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Proper out-and-out strikers, the game's classic No. 9s, have become increasingly rare in world football over recent years.

The two most prolific footballers around today, Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, are not what you would class as true No. 9s.

Barcelona's Messi plays as the centre-forward at the Camp Nou but he is, in effect, a 'False 9' - a player who drops deep and links the play, but still occupies the most advances position on the pitch.

Likewise, Real Madrid's Ronaldo is a goalscoring maestro, but his favoured position is on the left flank, cutting inside onto his right foot, rather than leading the line at the Bernabeu.

Fear not, though, because true No. 9s are very much still in existence. Indeed, some of the world's best footballers can still class themselves as proper out-and-out strikers - and coming up are the world's five best.

Click next to see the selected five - and don't forget to have your say in the comments section below.

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Robin Van Persie
Edinson Cavani
Robert Lewandowski

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