Picture : Galip Haktanir was the oldest surviving national team player.

All-time ranking for top football centenarians

Galip Haktanır died on September 30 at the age of 102. At the time of his death, he was the oldest surviving national team player in the world football. He won 5 caps for Turkey between 1948 and 1950.
On this occasion, we publish a list of players in the history who performed at the highest national level (league and/or cup) and lived 100 years or more. They are ranked by length of life.

*There are currently 23 such players. Half of them (12) also played for their national teams. For them, we give the number of matches for the national team; in the column NTP (National Team Players).

*Two players featured at the World Cups. The most famous was an Argentine forward Francisco Varallo, the last surviving participant of the 1930 World Cup. He passed away in 2010 at 100 years 207 days.
The second World Cup participant in the “Club of Centenarians” was Fernand Jaccard, a player of the Swiss team at the 1934 edition (2 matches).

*Another two members of the “Club” didn’t play for the national teams but ruled them as coaches. For them, we give their number of games in the column NTC (National Team Coaches).
Ferdinand Fabra coached Finland at the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin.
Ignacio Trelles was in charge of Mexico at two World Cup editions (1962 and 1966). Among all World Cup participants (either players or coaches), he lived the longest life, 103 years 236 days. In the general ranking, he takes 5th position.

*Ivo Pavelić (Yugoslavia) is the world record holder specifically for all capped players; he lived 103 years 12 days.

*Sam Latter (Scotland) holds the overall record for all top level players in the history; he lived 106 years 153 days. He played as left-back for the club Third Lanark between 1928 and 1931.
Moreover, Latter was the oldest living man in Scotland between August 2009 and his death in June 2010, and also for a few weeks was the oldest living Jew in Britain.

*Graham Bailey (England) is the only living football centenarian at the moment. A defender of Huddersfield and Sheffield United between 1936 and 1950, he is 103-year old now.

1Sam LatterScotland04.01.190406.06.2010106-153  
2Arthur SmithEngland08.05.191521.08.2021106-105  
3Egon SundbergSweden27.02.191104.09.2015104-190  
4George HaighEngland26.06.191523.04.2019103-301  
5Ignacio TrellesMexico31.07.191624.03.2020103-236 106
6Graham BaileyEngland22.03.1920 >103-202  
7Ivo PavelićYugoslavia10.02.190822.02.2011103-0125 
8Wilf NixonEngland22.10.1882.04.1985>102-161  
9Maxime LehmannFrance17.12.190624.04.2009102-1282 
10Galip HaktanırTurkey01.08.192130.09.2023102-0605 
11Zach MarchEngland25.10.189218.09.1994101-328  
12Georges GéronimiFrance16.06.189206.03.1994101-2631 
13Andreas NilssonSweden26.01.191001.10.2011101-2481 
14Gunnar LöfgrenSweden30.11.191011.03.2012101-1025 
15Ferdinand FabraGermany08.10.190622.12.2007101-075 8
17Jaroslav CháňaCzechoslovakia19.12.189926.09.2000100-2712 
18René LlenseFrance14.07.191312.03.2014100-23111 
19Francisco VaralloArgentina05.02.191030.08.2010100-20716 
20Fernand JaccardSwitzerland08.10.190715.04.2008100-19012 
21Rodrigo García VizosoSpain26.02.1909 02.06.2009100-096  
22Achilleas GrammatikopoulosGreece28.09.190830.12.2008100-0945 
23Leonidas AndrianopoulosGreece10.08.191125.10.2011100-07611