Juventus and Inter.
So what better way to celebrate Sunday’s rescheduled title clash than with a combined XI of the pair’s most celebrated icons?
Gianluigi Buffon (GK)
A nine-time scudetto winner, Gigi pips fellow Bianconeri shot-stopper Dino Zoff to the number one spot in our combined XI.
Javier Zanetti (RB)
Gaetano Scirea (CB)
Gateano Scirea was a winner. There’s no other way of putting it. Widely considered one of the very best, the World Cup winner lifted every trophy on offer during his 14 years at Juventus, claiming seven Serie A titles and a clean sweep of European prizes.
A complete defender, and one who rightly earned his place in Juve’s all-time greatest XI, and he has also worked his way into 90min’s combined XI, too. I’m not sure which is more prestigious, really.
Walter Samuel (CB)
Giacinto Facchetti (LB)
Another Inter legend completes our backline. A one-club man, and a legend also for the Italian national side,
Michel Platini (RM)
Bit of a ‘Paul Scholes playing left-midfield for England’ vibe to this one, but needs must. Michel Platini has suffered a huge fall from grace with his dodgy dealings at FIFA in recent years, but we mustn’t forget that this man was absolutely unstoppable during his five-year spell at Juventus.
Although his time with I Bianconeri turned out to be the final years of his career, Platini still managed to bag two Serie A titles, a European Cup, and three
Oh yeah, and three successive Ballon d’Or awards. A proper baller.
Esteban Cambiasso (CM)
An oldie but a goldie, Giampiero Boniperti joins Cambiasso in the centre of the park. Boniperti picked up o
Pavel Nedved (LM)
A proper Juventus legend. Those bouncing, flowing locks. That wicked left peg. Pavel Nedved took Turin by storm upon his arrival, winning two scudetti, and he even remained loyal to the club when they were relegated from Serie A during the Calciopoli scandal.
Nedved was cruelly robbed of a 2003 Champions League final appearance for a yellow card he collected in the semi-final, but it was us who were truly robbed of seeing the genius on the biggest stage of all. If it’s any consolation to Nedved though, he’s made the cut with 90min.
A generational talent. A boy who burst onto the scene, and sat every goalkeeper down on their bum in an instant. Ronaldo was one of football’s greatest ever stars. Il Fenomeno. It’s unbelievable to think Barcelona allowed the Brazilian starlet to leave after only one season in Catalonia, but Inter broke the bank to sign the superstar – and they certainly reaped the benefits.
Ronaldo destroyed every defence in Serie A claiming his first Ballon d’Or success while at the club. The only sour note of his time in Italy was the knee injury he suffered against Lecce, and subsequently aggravated against Lazio, which would recur heartbreakingly throughout his career.
What a player, though.
Alessandro Del Piero (ST)
One of the most talented strikers in world football, Alessandro Del Piero was always destined for greatness. His lightning quick feet, his ability to ghost beyond players, and of course, his clinical finishing. The Italian forward was the best in the business, but his brilliant career was sadly ravaged by injuries.
The fact Del Piero recovered from crippling knee problems and continued to break records speaks volumes of the character of the man, although he never reached the heights that were initially expected of him. But he changed his game to mask his deficiencies and he eventually became Juve’s highest ever scorer. But more importantly, he completes our unbeatable XI.