Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is The Better Player?

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Before Messi and Ronaldo rose to the top of the footballing world, we had Pele and Diego Maradona, two of the greatest players the game has ever seen. They are magnificent structures that previously dominated the competition during their spotlight. Both have accomplished great things and have been involved in the renowned World Cup.

Their illustrious careers lead us to ask who is the more extraordinary of the two stars. Given that the two are not competing simultaneously, it won’t be easy to provide a specific answer to this question. We can rely on statistics to examine data to gain a complete picture.

With TSC, let’s take things a step further.

Pele Vs. Maradona: Club Goals

Pele’s goal totals are erroneous because too many unconfirmed sources are supplying them. Despite this, the Brazilian superstar prevailed in the end over his Argentine opponent.

Pele played for and scored more than 700 goals for the club, whereas Maradona only managed 300 goals in his whole career. To fully comprehend it, we must examine all of the elements involved, including club representatives and their positions.

During the game, Maradona was used as an offensive midfielder, with the responsibility of dropping deep into his half to prepare for attacks. Pele, on the other hand, is a more experienced forward.

Before he arrived in North America with the New York Cosmos, much of the Brazilian star’s career was based in Santos, where he began his professional career. “Golden Boy” has a history of switching over subject clubs regularly. He has played for various teams, including Argentinos Juniors, Boca Juniors, Napoli, and Barcelona, among many others.

We should also acknowledge that Diego Maradona’s style of play had to be significantly altered when he moved from Argentina to Italy’s Serie A and Spain’s Primera Division. These events bring together many good defensive squads, each with several solid and complex defenders.

Pele Vs. Maradona Stats: International Games

Stat Pele Maradona
International caps 92 91
International goals 77 34
Goals per game 0.84 0.37

Pele’s scoring record is significantly greater than that of the Argentine superstar in the international arena. He scored several goals for the Brazilian national team, contributing to their climb to international prominence.

The best Brazilian footballer has made 77 mistakes on the field. Maradona only managed to score 34 goals for his country’s national squad. Both Pele and Maradona have played approximately the same number of matches, yet their scoring rates are significantly different. It’s simple to understand why Pele is regarded as “The King.”

The position of these two stars has a significant impact on their outcomes as well. In contrast to Pele, Diego Armando Maradona is more of a classic-style player assigned to crucial offensive positions.

Diego Maradona Vs. Pele: World Cups Stats

Stats Pele Maradona
Tournaments 4 4
Appearances 14 21
Goals 12 8
Goals per game 0.86 0.38


Both Pele and Diego Maradona appeared in the Fifa World Cup seasons, with Argentina star-making more appearances than the Brazilian legend. Injuries hampered people’s form in 1966. Therefore the stats presented here are not representative of his abilities.

There is no doubt about the Brazilian striker’s ability to score goals in the Premier League. Despite this, he continues to achieve more goals than Maradona. Pele scored a total of 12 goals in 14 games. In the World Cup Finals of 1958 and 1970, two decisive goals were scored.

In the 21 matches he played during the World Cup, the “Golden Boy” scored eight goals for his country. His most notable season was in 1986 when he scored four goals to help Argentina win the World Cup.

The quarter-final versus England provided him with several unforgettable moments that Maradona supporters still remember. To begin with, the crowd was astonished by the controversial solo goal of the Argentinean great. However, his second goal stunned the world and is still regarded as the “Best Goal of the Century” to this day.
We should reflect on that momentous occasion, shall we?

Pele won three World Cups during his career, in 1958, 1962, and 1970, which is the most in the sport’s history. Meanwhile, Maradona only won the World Cup once, in 1986. In addition, he suffered a heartbreaking loss in the 1990 World Cup Final.

Pele Vs. Diego Maradona: Title Comparison

Titles Pele Maradona
World Cup 3 1
Intercontinental Cup 2 0
Copa Libertadores 2 0
Intercontinental Supercup 1 0
UEFA Cup 0 1
National League 7 3
National Cup 0 5
FIFA World Youth Championship 0 1
Total 15 11

Pele was victorious once more in this regard. He has had a distinguished club and national playing career in which he has excelled in every aspect.

With Santos FC, this best footballer has twice won the Copa Libertadores title, making him the most decorated player globally. In addition, he is the proud owner of two Intercontinental Cups and one Intercontinental Supercup title. Pele earned six Brasileiro titles while playing football in the Brazilian League and other honors.

Aside from that, he has won ten Campeonato Paulista titles and four Torneio Rio-Sao Paulo titles in his career. When he played for the New York Cosmos, “The King” captured the NASL Bowl championship.

On the other hand, Diego Maradona was enjoying his success in Argentina, Italy, and Spain at the same time. His most productive stint as a player was while with Napoli. His accomplishments include winning the Coppa Italia, Supercoppa Italiana, two Serie A championships, and the UEFA Cup during his time in Italy.

While playing with Barcelona, the “Golden Boy” was a three-time winner of the Copa de la Liga, the Copa del Rey, and the Supercopa de Espana. While wearing the Boca jersey, he was also the Argentine Primera Division Metropolitano owner, which he sold to the club.

Diego Maradona is also the FIFA World Youth Championship winner, which he won in 1998. This competition serves as a youth equivalent to the adult world’s World Cup.
Even though Pele has won awards, we cannot compare Maradona to him based on numbers. Both Pele and Maradona racked up impressive gold medals and trophies to demonstrate their abilities in their prime.

Diego Maradona Vs. Pele: Individual Awards

Awards Pele Maradona
World Cup Golden Ball 1 1
FIFA Player of the Century 1 1
Ballon d’Or 1 1
South American Footballer of the Year 0 2
National league top scorer awards 3 6
South American Championship (Copa America) Best Player 1 0


In terms of individual honors, Pele and Maradona are the best players in the history of world football. Both have been awarded the Golden Ball at the World Cup. In 2000, they shared the FIFA Player of the Century title with a group of other players.

France Football awarded them an honorary Ballon d’Or for their efforts. In 2016, Pele was considered the alternate winner for seven Ballon d’Or awards, whereas Maradona was only considered the alternate winner for two awards.

Diego Maradona is also the recipient of two South American Footballer of the Year awards he shared with Ronaldo. Pele is a great disappointment that this prize was only established in 1970.

In 1959, he was recognized as the finest player in the old South America Championship, and he received an honorable mention. That trophy served as a forerunner to Copa America.
Several unofficial individual distinctions and prizes from publications and other organizations have also been bestowed upon both performers during their careers.

Diego Maradona Vs. Pele: Fun Facts

In addition to the goals and medals, many people compare and contrast these two legends in other, more inconsequential ways. They are the beneficiaries of extraordinary coincidences. Keep an eye out for more information in this section.

Jersey Number

Both Pele and Diego Maradona have donned the illustrious No. 10 jersey. From 1956 to 1977, it was worn by the Brazilian great, and from 1976 to 1997, it was worn by the Argentinian player.

Pele’s most notable contribution has been as a goal scorer. He played for the Brazilian national team, the Selecao, and scored 77 goals for them. His outstanding goal-scoring performances exemplify the star’s commitment to the clubs he joins.
Pele is the only footballer to have scored more than 1000 goals and won three World Cups in a single career.

On the other hand, Diego Maradona is a player with a more approachable and adaptable playing style. He has scored 345 goals in 692 games throughout his professional playing career. Another nickname for Maradona is DS10, where DS is an abbreviation for Dios, translated as God in Spanish.

Private Life

Pele’s personal life is immaculate. He has a lovely family and a successful job that has earned him numerous distinctions. Pele served as a Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in 1995.
Pele also played for two teams during his career: Santos FC (1955-1967) and the New York Cosmos (1957-1964). (1975-77).

On the other hand, Maradona played for a total of six different clubs. After failing a drug test, he was also ejected from the 1982 World Cup and expelled in disgrace in 1994. We can’t forget about his controversial goal against the New York Knicks in 1986.
Maradona was also a cocaine addict, as was his father.


Based on the statistics and trophies listed above, it’s not difficult to conclude that Pele is the superior player. We cannot ignore Diego Maradona’s enormous influence and exceptional abilities despite this.

The decision on who will be the greatest football player is based on the individual’s perception of the situation.

Many people choose Maradona over Pele because they haven’t had the opportunity to see Pele play football in person, and the same is true for the other way around. As a result, the personal conflict between the two stars continues to smolder to this very day.

When you poll the world’s most famous footballers for their thoughts, it’s easy to see how they conflict with one another. Pele was chosen by Leo Messi, while Cristiano Ronaldo chose Diego Maradona.

So, who are your top three choices? Would you be willing to share your thoughts with us?