Champions League: 'It's a frustration to not have a final between Messi and Ronaldo', says Jose Mourinho
What's the story?
Former Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho has stated that it is frustrating for football fans to not get a Champions League final between Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo despite the fact that the duo has been at the top of the game for over a decade.
The Portuguese manager, however, believes that a European final between the two Ballon d'Or winners is still a possibility before they retire.
In case you didn't know...
Liverpool are all set to lock horns with fellow Premier League club Tottenham Hotspur in the Champions League final at the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium later tonight.
Barcelona and Juventus, who were initial favourites for the European crown, missed out on the opportunity to go all the way after they were knocked out of the competition by Liverpool and Ajax.
While the Catalan giants squandered a three-goal lead to the Reds in the semi-finals, the Old Lady succumbed to a shock defeat to Ajax in the quarter-finals.
The heart of the matter
Messi and Ronaldo, who have been at the summit of modern football for years, are yet to meet each another on the big stage that is the Champions League final in the last decade. However, Mourinho thinks the situation remains a possibility.
In an interview with Eleven Sports (via Goal), Mourinho opines,
"First of all, I think it's a frustration for all those who like football to never have had a [Champions League] final between the two [Messi and Ronaldo]."
"It was almost real many times, but it never happened. I always thought that it would be a big injustice to them, in the sense that everything would be centred on them and that one would come out holding on to the big ears cup and the other would come out with his head down."
"I always thought it would be a great injustice to have a duel between the titans of the two best players in the world in the last decade, for one of them to bow to the weight of defeat. That's why it's probably a good thing it never happened."
"Can it still happen? It could still happen. They're both in clubs that want to win. They don't hide that they want to win themselves. Of course it can happen. I’m perfectly watching Cristiano, with his 34, I think, playing at the highest level as long as he wants."
Both players have past the age of 30 and used to face each other regularly in Spain. Despite Ronaldo's move to Juventus, the comparison between the two players has not stopped.
You can catch the highly-anticipated Champions League final between Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur later tonight at 12.30AM (IST).