Speaking to Marca, Maradona said:
"These two are superior to the rest. Messi isn't better than Cristiano Ronaldo and vice versa,"
"Ronaldo always shows great passion and, honestly, it bores me to repeat that Messi doesn't have to win a World Cup to be a phenomenon. Enough of that!
However, Maradona seemed to take a subtle dig at Messi, saying:
"If you don't have personality, and don't sing the national anthem, then you should be left alone. The kid had every right to retire from the national side in the summer, and then he returns and still gets criticised!"
Euro 2016 success along with the Champions league triumph makes Cristiano Ronaldo the favourite to win the Ballon d’Or this year, but Maradona was not convinced by the accuracy of the award:
"For me, the Ballon d'Or is not accurate. For example in 2014 Manuel Neuer was a finalist with Messi and Ronaldo. The German should have won, he'd just lifted the World Cup!"
Barcelona star Neymar is considered to be the long-term heir of Lionel Messi at Barcelona and the Argentine legend admitted that he enjoyed watching Neymar play.
"Ronaldo and Messi are no longer in a two-horse race, there are three running to win," he said.
"I knew that Brazil wasn't going to stand by after Rivaldo, Ronaldinho, and Kaka, then Neymar emerged and entertains everyone.
"I love watching him play, you can kick him 200 times and he'll still run at the defence again and again."
Lionel Messi has emerged from the shadow of being the ‘next Maradona’ and has created his own legacy having won an incredible eight La Liga titles and 4 Champions League titles in his Barcelona career.
Cristiano Ronaldo meanwhile has won 3 Premier League titles, a league title in Spain, 3 Champions Leagues and a Euro title. The failure of Messi to win a major international triumph in 4 international tournament finals has stopped many people from calling him the greatest player of all time.
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