England vs Scotland: The 20 greatest British players of all time have been ranked


England vs Scotland at a major international tournament at Wembley? Bring it on.

The old enemies will go head-to-head on Friday evening in their Euro 2020 Group D clash.

England will progress to the last-16 of the competition with victory, while Scotland are in danger of ‘coming home too soon’ if they suffer another defeat.

On paper, England should cruise to a comfortable victory.

Gareth Southgate’s side are one of the favourites to win Euro 2020 and have a 26-man squad full of incredible talent.


As for Scotland, they’re appearing in their first international tournament since 1998 and are just hoping to reach the knockout stages.

The England vs Scotland fixture dates back to 1872 – the first ever international match ever.

In the 149 years since, their two nations only have one major trophy between them – England’s 1966 World Cup triumph,

But that’s not to say both England and Scotland haven’t had quality players represent them down the years.


And ahead of the all-British clash this evening, we decided to look at the 20 greatest British players in football history.

Over on Ranker – a website which allows fans to upvote and downvote player to rank them – almost 60k votes have been cast to declare the greatest British player.

But they don’t come from either England or Scotland.

Let’s check out the list:


20 | John Charles

19 | Mark Hughes

18 | Peter Shilton

17 | Roy Keane

16 | Rio Ferdinand

Okay, first thing’s first: Does Irishman Roy Keane belong in this British list? Either way, he finds himself in 17th place.

He beats legendary Welshmen John Charles and Mark Hughes as well as former England goalkeeper Peter Shilton.

Rio Ferdinand just misses out on a place in the top 15.



15 | Stanley Matthews

14 | Jimmy Greaves

13 | Andy Cole

12 | Joe Jordan

11 | Gordon Banks

Some iconic names in this section – and Andy Cole.

No offence to the former Manchester United striker but he surely isn’t the 13th greatest British player of all time.

Elsewhere, Stanley Matthews, Jimmy Greaves and Gordon Banks are three of the best English players ever.

Scotland’s Joe Jordan is sandwiched between them.



10 | Nobby Stiles

9 | Ryan Giggs

8 | Ray Wilkins

7 | Paul Scholes

6 | Bryan Robson

We’re into the top greatest British players ever and there are some incredible players involved here.

World Cup winner, Nobby Stiles, comes in at No.10.

While Wales’ Ryan Giggs is ninth.

Then comes a trio of Englishmen with Ray Wilkins in eighth, Paul Scholes in seventh and Bryan Robson in sixth.



5 | Bobby Moore

4 | Denis Law

3 | Duncan Edwards

2 | Bobby Charlton

1 | George Best

So, the greatest British player of all time is the late, great George Best. You can’t really argue with that, can you?

The 1968 Ballon d’Or winner may have only played 37 times for Northern Ireland but he’s a Manchester United. Much like the players he beat in the list with Bobby Charlton in second, Duncan Edwards in third and Denis Law in fourth all being synonymous with the Red Devils.

The 1966 World Cup-winning captain, Bobby Moore, makes the top five.

While the top five can’t be argued about too much, we’re can’t believe some of the names that are missing from the top 20.

Where do we start?

Steven Gerrard? David Beckham? Frank Lampard? Wayne Rooney? Kevin Keegan? Michael Owen? Gary Lineker? Geoff Hurst?

Whoever voted for this list should hang their heads in shame.

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