Many football personalities have consistently praised Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. Many such cases have occurred in recent years.
However, when such praise comes from a legendary figure like Diego Maradona, you always know it’s pretty special.
Before his death, the Argentine great jumped on the Lionel Messi vs. Cristiano Ronaldo debate, offering a brilliant answer that summed up the two superstars perfectly.
The Albiceleste legend naturally sided with his compatriot but also recognized the Portuguese. He said Ronaldo reminded him of another Argentine icon, Gabriel Batistuta, because of his goalscoring prowess.
“I prefer Messi to Cristiano Ronaldo but I recognize that the latter is an animal”, explained Diego Maradona, quoted by SportBible.
“I wish he was Argentinian. He’s amazing. He reminds me of Gabriel Batistuta. As soon as he touched the ball, it was a goal.”
On Ronaldo, he added:
“Among the few players I saw, some of the greatest were [Alfredo] Di Stefano, [Johan] Cruyff, Messi – Cristiano Ronaldo could also be there.”
The former Argentina and Napoli superstar also had more interesting things to say about Lionel Messi. Maradona said he didn’t see the current Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) star playing badly, adding that he looked like he had been hit with a magic wand.
“I don’t remember seeing Lionel Messi play badly,” he said.
“There are players who have been touched by a magic wand. We Argentinians are proud that Lionel Messi is Argentinian.
“The other is an animal. Ronaldo is pure power, and now he’s also a wizard. He said he would score three goals and he scored three goals.”
How Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo started the current campaign
Messi seems to have put his slow start to life at PSG behind him, having started the new season in spectacular form. He was the difference again for the Parisians last weekend, scoring the only goal that gave his side a vital 1-0 victory over Lyon in Ligue 1.
In total, the playmaker has made 11 appearances for the French giants in all competitions so far this season, registering six goals and eight assists.
Meanwhile, Cristiano Ronaldo appears to be affected by the intense speculation surrounding his future at Manchester United this summer.
The Portuguese went goalless in his first seven games of the season but finally opened his account with a goal against FC Sheriff in the Europa League last week.