GOAT Debate: Italy legend picks Ronaldo over Messi as the best player in the world
What's the story?
Italy and Juventus Juventus legend Antonio Cabrini believes that Cristiano Ronaldo is a better player than Lionel Messi as the Portugal superstar has proven to be a real leader both on and off the pitch
In case you didn't know...
Ronaldo and Messi both missed out on the Champions League this season, with Juventus losing to Ajax in the quarter-finals and Barcelona getting knocked out at the hands of Liverpool in the semi-final stage. It is the first time in six years that neither of the two have won the Champions League.
Last summer, Ronaldo left Real Madrid to join Juventus in search of a new challenge and to prove himself in another foreign league. Even though he had a slow start in Italy, he came back strongly to lead Juventus to the league title. He earned the Most Valuable Player award in the Serie A for his amazing performances. He also played a very important role in the Champions League for Juventus, scoring all of the club's five goals in the knockout rounds.
On the other hand, Messi enjoyed a tremendous personal season, netting 51 goals in all competitions. Barcelona won La Liga, with Messi finishing as the league's top scorer. He also won the European Golden Shoe and top scored in the Champions League. But his amazing season turned sour towards the end as Barcelona lost to Liverpool in the Champions League semi-finals even after having a three-goal lead from the first leg. The Catalan giants also lost to Valencia in the Copa del Rey final.
Heart of the matter
Former Juventus defender Cabrini, who won six Serie A titles during his time in Turin amongst other honours, explained why he ranks Ronaldo over Messi.
"Ronaldo is probably the best player in the world.
"Obviously the focus in football over the last 10 years has been on the rivalry between Messi and Ronaldo.
"My personal opinion is that Ronaldo is better than Messi, but mainly in terms of leadership. Ronaldo has proven himself to be a real leader on a lot of occasions and not just on the pitch. He is a leader in his life as well as in sports.
"So with all due respect to Messi, there have been a few instances in his career that he came up short.
"That being said, we are speaking about two great players, I think we can all agree on that."
Both Ronaldo and Messi will be on a quest to win a trophy with their respective national teams this summer. While Portugal will be playing in the UEFA Nations League semi-finals, Argentina will participate in the Copa América.