The debate between Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo has gone on forever. Football fans all over the world agree that the two of them are the greatest footballers of our generation, but Brazil legend Pele feels that his countryman Neymar also deserves to be mentioned in the same breath.
In a recent interview with Universo Online in Brazil, Pele compared Neymar and Ronaldo. While the three-time World Cup winner asserted that Ronaldo is a better player at the moment, he did controversially say that Neymar is better than the Portuguese superstar in every technical aspect.
“Technically, Neymar is way better, but he [Ronaldo] is better when using the head. You don’t see Neymar scoring with the head, and that counts,” Pele said.
Although Pele has left Messi completely out of the discussion, he has gone on record earlier stating his preference for Messi. In an earlier interview, the Brazilian had said:
“Cristiano Ronaldo is a great goalscorer, but Messi is the best.”
Both Neymar and Cristiano Ronaldo share their birthday on February 5th. Ronaldo will be turning 32, while Neymar will be 25`and perhaps Pele was factoring in Neymar’s age when he claimed that his countryman was ‘way better’ than Ronaldo.
Usually, football aficionados all over the world debate about Messi and Ronaldo. Pele however, has added an interesting twist to things and put Neymar’s name into the hat as well. While there is no doubting Neymar’s talent, the Brazilian is yet to display the consistency and class of the 4 time Ballon d’Or winner.
Pele has no doubts on Neymar’s potential whatsoever and the Brazilian is earmarked to be Messi’s heir at Barcelona and a future Ballon d’Or winner.
While many footballers like Gareth Bale and Neymar have been tipped to take over from Ronaldo and Messi, none of them have yet to come close to the high standards set by the legendary duo.
Neymar, at just 25, is definitely one of the best footballers on the planet, but to call him “technically way better” than Ronaldo is taking things a tad too far.