12 stars who've won Olympic gold


It may come as a surprise to some that some of world football's biggest stars have won an Olympic gold medal in the past. Here are 12 players who have done just that, including Lionel Messi and Neymar!

The Olympics' football tournament is seemingly underrated by many, with a lot clubs over the years having not shown a keen interest in letting their stars participate at the Games. 

Scroll through the gallery above to see 12 top stars who have won Olympic gold medals

For the latest showpiece, while the event allows for three overaged players to be included in the U23 squads, Liverpool and Brighton & Hove Albion reportedly refused to release Mohamed Salah and Percy Tau, respectively, to represent their nations at the Olympics.  

However, despite that, there are some top-class players who have featured in the competition over the years, among them Messi and Neymar, who won it eight years apart, in 2008 and 2016, respectively. 

Read: SA's new Olympic kit and more

At the 2008 Games in Beijing, China, it was Argentina who emerged as gold medallists, and they had Messi, Angel Di Maria, and Sergio Aguero in their ranks. 

At the 2012 Summer Olympics held in London, England, Mexico were crowned champions, and the likes of Giovani dos Santos and Wolverhampton Wanderers striker Raul Jimenez won gold medals. 

It was hosts Brazil who triumphed at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, which saw Neymar, Gabriel Jesus, and Marquinhos get their hands on the prized medals – scroll through the gallery above to see more high-profile footballers who have won Olympic gold in the past!

Here are some top footballers who are competing at this year's Olympics

Barca 'set date' for Messi contract

Eto'o's shock response to Messi question

7 transfers announced over the weekend