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Updated on May 23rd 2023, 6:45:32 pm

AC Milan's best XI of all time

In this article, check out AC Milan's best XI of all time. AC Milan is the second most successful European club according to UEFA's most prestigious competition formerly known as European Cup and today we know it as the champions league.

AC Milan is the second most successful European club according to UEFA's most prestigious competition formerly known as European Cup and today we know it as the champions league. It's been more than a century since Rossoneri won their first major trophy. They won 50 more glorious titles towards then and currently are competing for their 19th Scudetto. For many generations, an enormous number of superstars have played for them. The list of the best AC Milan XI of all time will see players who have been the best players in the world at their peak.

1. Sebastiano Rossi

During 21 years of his professional career, he appeared in 346 games in Serie A, of which 240 of them was for Milan. He was a tall, aggressive, and physically strong goalkeeper and was mostly known for his confidence and organizing the defense line. Rossi held the record for the longest streak without conceding a goal in Serie A history. In 11 matches from December 1993 to February 1994, he kept a clean sheet for 929 minutes. His record was suppressed by Gianluigi Buffon in 2016 by 45 minutes. Rossi also holds the record for the fewest goals conceded by a goalkeeper during a single 34-match Italian league season, with 11.

He joined the Rossoneri in 1990 and together they dominated Italian football for most of the 1990s. until 2002, he was capped in 330 games for Milan in all competitions. he is the club's second-most capped keeper of all time, behind only Christian Abbiati’s record, of 380 games. With the club, they won the 1993-94 champions league, the 1990 and 1994 Super Cups, and the 1990 International. Also, they won 5 Serie A titles and three consecutive Supercoppa Italiana from 1992 to 1994.

2. Mauro Tassotti

Mauro Tassotti is regarded as one of Italy’s greatest defenders. He played in 583 games for Milan and scored 10 goals. During those 17 years, they won two Serie B and five Serie A titles. In 1988, they won the Supercoppa Italiana and the champions league title. The next year they also won the champions league, international cup, and super cup. As one of the all-time greatest XI of AC Milan, he also was part of the squad winning three consecutive Supercoppa Italiana alongside Rossi. Later he joined his teammates in the AC Milan Hall of Fame.

3. Alessandro Costacurta

He was a versatile defender and a man-marking center-back (stopper in Italian) but also played as a sweeper or even a defensive midfielder occasionally. Despite being a defender, he was an accurate penalty-taker. In 20 years playing for Milan, he appeared in 663 games in all competitions.

Under Sacchi and Capello’s management, they also won four Supercoppa Italiana titles, three UEFA super cups, two international cups, five Serie A, and three champions league titles. After Capello’s departure in 1996, Milan faced dark times in its history. Costacurta was also named Milan's vice-captain,  Maldini. Costacurta’s former teammate, Carlo Ancelotti became manager. He helped Milan to gain strength and Costacurta would form part of another excellent defense, alongside Maldini, Nesta, and Cafu.

4. Franco Baresi

Baresi is regarded as one of the best AC Milan XI of all time. Although he was capable of playing anywhere along the backline, he primarily excelled as a center back and as a sweeper. As a member of Italian football and Milan Hall of Fame, he became AC Milan Player of the Century in 1999 and AIC Serie A Player of the Century in 2000. In 20 years and 719 games for Milan, he won six Serie A and four Supercoppa Italiana titles with the club. Also, they won two consecutive champions league and another one in 1993. Baresi was also runner-up to teammate van Basten for the Ballon d'Or in 1989, finishing ahead of his other teammate Frank Rijkaard, and was named Serie A Footballer of the Year in 1989–90.

Also Read | 1988-94 AC Milan: Sacchi and Capello's game-changers

5. Paolo Maldini

Paolo Maldini is an example of Italian defensive crafts work. He's so big that when he retired Rossoneri retired his number 3 as well. Maldini's family has been in Milan for three generations. Paolo had been in the Rossoneri lineup from the mid-80s to the late 2000s and in thirteen years he was wearing the captain's armband.

Maldini holds the record for most appearances for Milan with 647 Serie A caps. He used to have the same title for the entire Italy before Gianluigi Buffon surpassed him. Yet he still holds the record for European appearances. Il Capitano has played in all of the defensive roles for Rossoneri. He is one of the most notable players who have been in just one club for his entire career. Only a few clubs have more trophies than Paolo Maldini. He has won seven Scudetti, five Supercoppa Italiana, one Coppa Italia, and of course five Champions Leagues.

6. Andrea Pirlo

Andrea Pirlo is one of the best midfielders in football history and one of AC Milan's best XI. His unique ball control and technique alongside hawk-eyed vision and vigilant game-reading gift made his iconic style of play. Pirlo is the definition of a registry. His duty was to start the playmaking deep down near the defenders with his accurate short passes or trademark long ones. Pirlo's lack of physical strength and pace was not a problem in that position.

He joined Milan from the city rivals Inter and spent one decade in Rossoneri. Pirlo won two Scudetti and two UEFA Champions League with Milan. He was one of the most important players of Italy's 2006 World Cup-winning squad. The other factor that makes Pirlo one of the AC Milan best 11 of all time is that he was one of the best free kickers football has ever seen. He has scored 26 goals from free-kicks in Serie A and only Siniša Mihajlović has scored more.

Pirlo has been included in IFFHS World's Best Playmaker top 10 lists6 times. He was nominated for the Ballon d'Or award three times and his best place was 5th in 2007.

7. Gianni Rivera

Rivera played a big role for Milan to win their first European Cup title in 1963. That year he was nominated for the Ballon d'Or title and finished runner-up. As one of the best AC Milan XI of all time, he was twenty years old and already became a high-profile footballer. Besides his playmaking abilities, Rivera scored many goals himself. He was awarded a Capocannoniere (Serie A top goal scorer) in 1972-73 and two Coppa Italia top scorers in 1966-67 and 1970-71. Rivera scored 164 goals in 658 appearances for Milan and he is the club's third all-time goal scorer. In 1969 he once again won the European Cup with Milan, only this time he was the Captain. In that year Ballon d'Or was handed to him.

8. Kaká

Kaká is one of the best players of his generation and one of AC Milan's all-time greatest XI. He is the last Ballon d'Or winner before the Messi-Ronaldo era. Kaka's performance was so good that Milan loaned out Rivaldo and their most expensive sign-in Rui Costa became his backup. Carlo Ancelotti used Kaka's playmaking skills, pace, and dribbling techniques in the attacking midfielder role perfectly. At the end of the season, Kaká received the Serie A Footballer of the Year award.

He received UEFA club footballer and club forward of the Year in 2007, As well as Serie A Footballer of the Year for the second time, FIFA world player of the Year, and world soccer player of the Year. That was the year that Kaká was awarded the Ballon d'Or. After two more wonderful years, Kaká left Milan to join Real Madrid to form a new Galácticos team with Cristiano Ronaldo.

Check out here Best memorable moments of Kaka

9. Andriy Shevchenko

When Andriy Shevchenko joined Milan from Dynamo Kyiv, he was the most expensive sign-in for Rossoneri. In his first season in Italy, Shevchenko not only filled the vacancy of George Weah but also became Milan's main striker above Oliver Bierhoff. He became Serie A top scorer with 24 goals, ahead of Gabriel Batistuta and Hernan Crespo. In 6 out of 7 seasons in his first spell in Milan, Shevchenko was the top goal scorer of the club. His scoring abilities were remarkable and he showed no mercy to the opponents, especially inside the box. Shevchenko's career peaked in the 2003-04 seasons. In the previous season, Milan had won the Coppa Italia and more importantly UEFA Champions League and it was time for Milan's first Scudetto in the new millennium. As one of the best AC Milan XI of all time, he won his second Capocannoniere award and Supercoppa Italiana alongside the Serie A championship. It all led to the winning of the Ballon d'Or by the Ukrainian contract killer in the same year.

10. Marco van Basten

Despite his career was short, Marco van Basten is considered one the best footballers and one of the best AC Milan XI of all time. The legendary Dutch striker has only played for two clubs in his professional career. The first time he played was in Ajax and he got to the field as a substitute to replace the great Johan Cruyff. Van Basten scored a goal in his very first match. Five years later, he was the best striker in the whole of Holland and was named Eredivisie's top scorer for four consecutive seasons.

Van Basten's stunning performances helped Milan win 16 titles including four Scudetti and three Champions Leagues. As one of the AC Milan best 11 of all time, van Basten himself won numerous awards and titles like winning the Ballon d'Or and UEFA best player of the year awards, both three times. In 1992 he was named FIFA world player and world soccer player of the year. His last match was the 1993 Champions League final against Marseille. They lost the final to the French team but the most unfortunate thing was that one of the most talented footballers had to say farewell to the field at the age of 28.

11. Gunnar Nordahl

Gunnar Nordahl is one of the greatest footballers in Serie A history. He is all-time Milan's top scorer. Before joining Milan in 1948, Nordahl had high profile achievements in Swedish football. Nordahl is the third on the Sweden national team goal scorers list. He scored 43 goals in only 33 matches for Sweden with a remarkable 1.3 ratio of goals per match. Nordahl's national team performances ended with winning the 1948 Olympics goal medal where he was the top scorer of the tournament.

Nordahl's club career is full of magnificent records and honors too. He was named Swedish league top scorer four times and that is a record. In the 1948-49 season, Nordahl left Norrköping after scoring 93 goals in 95 league games. During 8 seasons playing for AC Milan, Nordahl has a record of winning the Capocannoniere (Italian league top scorer) title five. He appeared in 257 league matches for Milan and netted 210 times. As one of the best AC Milan XI of all time, he is the third all-time Serie A top goal scorer with 225 but he has the best ratio with 0.77.

With Nordahl Milan won two Scudetti in 1950-51 and 1955-56. he holds the record for most hat tricks in Serie A jointly with Giuseppe Meazza (17). Some of the records the Swedish legend holds seems to be quite unattainable, Especially when it's about performances per match.

Check out here Juventus best XI of all time and Paris Saint Germain's best XI of all time