There can be some very rare things in football from the Republic of Ireland experimenting outside the 4-4-2 formation to Alexandre Pato’s fitness. Possibly one of the most rarest feats is when a player spends his entire career at just one club.
Of course it’s no easy task as temptation, form, personal circumstances can see many a player move on. Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard has been at Anfield for the past 13 years which has seen Champions League and FA Cup victories no name but a few. Roma’s Francesco Totti has been at Roma his entire professional career at almost 19 years now while Ryan Giggs of Manchester United has been at Old Trafford for 21 hugely successful years.
Former one-club men include Luis Carlos Cuarterto who spent 16 years playing his heart out for Real Zaragoza, Maurice Malpas had 19 big ones at the famous Dundee United and Russian legend Lev Yashin spent 22 years at Dynamo Moscow. But possibly one of the most famous and successful one-club man is one Paolo Maldini – an idol in Milan for his honours and more importantly remaining loyal to the Rossoneri. Retired in 2009 from football, the defender spent 25 years for AC Milan winning numerous Serie A, Coppa Italia and Champions League trophies. His famous number 3 jersey has been retired in his honour but could be reinstated if his son plays professionally for the club and chooses to bring it out of retirement. Something that, by the look of him, could easily happen.
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Spending your entire career at just one club boosts you into “idol” status amongst the club’s fans. Yes sir, one-club men are a dying breed. A remarkable feat players like Christian Vieri and Lutz Pfannenstiel will never understand.