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Cristiano Ronaldo tops 64-man shortlist as fans’ favorite European player

Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Cristiano Ronaldo, Zinedine Zidane
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Fans have voted Cristiano Ronaldo as their favorite European player of the 21 century ahead of 63 other legends, including Zidane and Iniesta.

Cristiano Ronaldo has topped a 64-man shortlist composed of the best European players of the 21st century.

In a poll on BBC Sport, 64 candidates were named for a European Championship-style tournament format. They were split into 16 different groups (A-P). And the ones with the most votes from each group progressed to the last-16 stage.

The eight winners from the last-16 round then proceeded to the quarter-finals before only four candidates were left in the semi-finals. The final two then squared off in the final itself.

Ronaldo comfortably topped Group B. He then beat France legend Thierry Henry in the last-16, former Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane in the quarter-finals, ex-Italy captain Paolo Maldini in the semi-finals, and Spain’s Andres Iniesta in the final.

Group Stages

* The percentages represent the amount votes that fans made for each player.

Results – Groups A to D

Group A: 1. Thierry Henry (63%), 2. Luis Figo (17%), Arjen Robben (9%), Kylian Mbappe (7%).

Group B: 1. Cristiano Ronaldo (78%), 2. Luka Modric (11%), Harry Kane (9%), Karim Benzema (2%).

Group C: 1. Kevin de Bruyne (35%), 2. Patrick Vieira (28%), 3. Sergio Ramos (23%), 4. Edwin van der Sar (14%)

Group D: 1. Zinedine Zidane (74%), 2. Wayne Rooney (18%), 3. Iker Casillas (7%), 4. Pepe (1%)

Results – Group E to H

Group E: 1. Clarence Seedorf (29%), 2. Gareth Bale (28%), 3. Pavel Nedved (24%), 4. Franck Ribery (19%).

Group F: 1. Zlatan Ibrahimovic (48%), 2. N’Golo Kante (26%), 3. Fernando Torres (15%), 4. Michael Owen (11%).

Group G: 1. Paul Scholes (39%), 2. Fabio Cannavaro (23%), 3. Ruud van Nistelrooy (19%), 4. Henrik Larsson (19%).

Group H: 1. Paolo Maldini (57%), 2. Cesc Fabregas (16%), 3. Raul (14%), Manuel Neuer (13%).

Results – Groups I to L

Group I: 1. Steven Gerrard (44%), 2. Gianluigi Buffon (37%), 3. Thomas Muller (13%), 4. Alessandro Nesta (6%).

Group J: 1. David Beckham (51%), 2. Robert Lewandowski (36%), 3. John Terry (8%), 4. Deco (5%).

Group K: 1. Xavi (66%), 2. Eden Hazard (14%), 3. Oliver Kahn (10%), 4. Petr Cech (10%).

Group L: 1. Alessandro del Piero (42%), 2. Frank Lampard (30%), 3. Virgil van Dijk (18%), 4. Andriy Shevchenko (10%).

Results – Group M to P

Group M: 1. Dennis Bergkamp (62%), 2. Carles Puyol (14%), 3. Philipp Lahm (13%), 4. Nemanja Vidic (11%).

Group N: 1. Andrea Pirlo (58%), 2. Robin van Persie (20%), 3. Rio Ferdinand (14%), 4. Ashley Cole (8%).

Group O: 1. Xabi Alonso (38%), 2. David Silva (31%), 3. Vincent Kompany (19%), 4. Gerard Pique (12%).

Group P: 1. Andres Iniesta (51%), 2. Alan Shearer (27%), 3. Francesco Totti (17%), 4. David Villa (5%).

The last-16 stage

* The winner from each tie is highlighted in Bold.

  • Thierry Henry 43%-57% Cristiano Ronaldo
  • Kevin De Bruyne 17%-83% Zinedine Zidane
  • Clarence Seedorf 33%-67% Zlatan Ibrahimovic
  • Paul Scholes 39%-61% Paolo Maldini
  • Steven Gerrard 43%-57% David Beckham
  • Xavi 66%-34% Alessandro Del Piero
  • Andrea Pirlo 45%-55% Dennis Bergkamp
  • Andres Iniesta 80%-20% Xabi Alonso

Quarter-final stage

* The winner from each tie is highlighted in Bold.

  • Cristiano Ronaldo 51% – 49% Zinedine Zidane
  • Zlatan Ibrahimovic 42% – 58% Paolo Maldini
  • David Beckham 45% – 55% Xavi
  • Dennis Bergkamp 47% – 53% Andres Iniesta

Semi-final stage

* The winner from each tie is highlighted in Bold.

  • Cristiano Ronaldo 62% – 38% Paolo Maldini
  • Xavi 28% – 72% Andres Iniesta

Final

* The winner is highlighted in Bold.

  • Cristiano Ronaldo 56% – 44% Andres Iniesta
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