It seems crazy to think that three weeks ago, the mano a mano that marked the football of the 21st century was still relevant. Before the World Cup in Qatar, even if Lionel Messi was in a better position with Paris Saint-Germain than Cristiano Ronaldo with Manchester United, comparison could always be right, and the outcome of the most important tournament that was looming could as well exalt the Portuguese than the Argentinian. Except that today, at a time when the big European clubs are preparing their weapons for the second half of the season, the first is no longer there, while the second is still just as decisive.
The maradonization of Messi: “He is a blood leader, as Argentina likes them”
It is that since their arrival in professional football, Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have continued to be put on the same level, apart from ordinary footballers. A dribble, a pass, a goal, then a Golden Ball, or a Champions League: each distinction was good to make one the best over the other, without the discussion ever seeming completely closed. .
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He surpasses all rivalry
And now, at the end of 2022, at the twilight of their career, the hitherto parallel roads of these two giants may have followed a different route for good. Cristiano Ronaldo has turned into an ugly duckling within a selection whose career has disappointed, while Lionel Messi has carried an entire team and an entire country on his shoulders to the Grail.
While the former suffered the taunts from European clubs who would no doubt have bent over backwards to secure his services a few months earlier, the latter was still climbing the hierarchy of the greatest players of all time, and saw the legends of the game cringe at his performance. Ronaldo, the Brazilian, reacted after the coronation of Argentina and his Pulga: “This guy plays so well that he surpasses any rivalry. […] It’s a farewell (at the World Cup) at the height of his genius. He is much more than the best player of this World Cup, he marked an era.“
Even FIFA gets involved
FIFA also put its two cents in it by splitting two tweets, which were quickly removed afterwards, reports AS. One evoking the debate of the best player of all time as being definitively closed, after the victory of Lionel Messi and his against France; and another, interpreted as a sarcasm against Cristiano Ronaldo, asking fans to share their satisfaction after the World Cup by “liking” the post, and showing the Portuguese with a thumbs up.
Beyond the character could not be more official of the superiority of one over the other, it is the lightness with which we make fun of Cristiano Ronaldo who strikes. As if the relief of finally being able to establish that Leo Messi is above, reflects on the Portuguese, who admittedly hasn’t done everything in his power lately to avoid ridicule.
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