Lionel Messi Makes Shocking Cristiano Ronaldo Admission
ionel Messi has made an interesting reference to Cristiano Ronaldo’s legacy.
For more than a decade, Messi vs. Ronaldo has been arguably the greatest rivalry in the beautiful sport of football. Over time, the pair has developed mutual respect towards one another.
In a recent interview with La Sexta, Messi once again addressed his rivalry with Ronaldo. But instead of glorifying both their accomplishments, the Argentine excluded himself in the conversation and put the Portuguese on the same level as some of the greatest athletes of all-time.
“There are many admirable athletes,” Messi said. “Rafa Nadal, [Roger] Federer, LeBron [James]–in all sports there is always someone who stands out and is admirable for his work.”
“Cristiano [Ronaldo] stands out in football,” he continued. “There are many who stand out and always do their best.”
Following Juventus’ thrashing of Barcelona in the UEFA Champions League earlier this month, Ronaldo also weighed in on the subject. It was the pair’s first head-to-head since the five-time Ballon d’Or winner’s move to Italy in 2018.
For Ronaldo, there was never a serious competition between him and Messi.
“Leo [Messi] and me shared the last twelve, thirteen or fourteen years of our lives,” Ronaldo told Movistar after Juve’s 3-0 win over Barca earlier this month. “I’ve always had a cordial relationship with him, I never saw him as a rival. It’s the press that creates the rivalry. If you ask Leo, he’ll tell you the same thing.”
“I faced him while with Manchester United, with Real Madrid and now with Juventus,” he added. “As far as I’m concerned, I’m happy about my goals and for me, managing to score is always the source of greater joys.”
Even more interesting, the 35-year-old admitted that it always seemed “better” when he played against Messi’s side.
“It’s always beautiful to play against him,” the Juventus talisman admitted. “Obviously, people will talk about our rivalry when we meet, but for me, it’s just a great privilege. Maybe it’s even better when I play against the team which he [Messi] is playing in.”
To this day, Messi and Ronaldo are still two of the best players in their respective leagues. In fact, this month alone, both legends have achieved remarkable career milestones.
Ronaldo has scored the 750th goal of his career in Juventus’ dominant 3-0 win against Dynamo Kyiv and is now just 17 goals behind Pele and 22 behind Romario in the all-time list.
Messi, on the other hand, has broken Pele’s all-time club record by notching his 644th club goal in Barcelona’s win over Valladolid on Tuesday.