No club in world football is as aristocratic as Real Madrid, and nobody can come as close to its dominance of its continent’s premier competition, the European Cup, or the Champions League, as it later became.
Real has won the Champions League/European Cup 13 times — the first five European Cups, another in 1966, three around the turn of the 20th century and then four in five seasons from 2014 to 2018.
Being the richest in terms of revenue has allowed the club to buy the best players on the planet, frequently smashing world-record transfer fees for players. Real’s pull is one that few players resist, though the club has developed its fair share of youth products who have delivered for the white shirt.
These days, a rivalry with Barcelona might define the club, but in Spain, Real has been the premier club in La Liga, with 33 titles won. Many great players have contributed to the team's success since its founding in 1902.
These are the 23 best players in Real Madrid history, and they include some of the greatest to ever play the game.
Related: All-Time Barcelona Team