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"Messi and Ronaldo are both just ridiculous talents" - Rio Ferdinand has his say on GOAT debate

654   //    11 Apr 2019, 21:40 IST

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo
Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo

What’s the story?

Former Manchester United captain, Rio Ferdinand had some thoughts over the Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi debate. The defender suggested that the debate between the two greatest players should come to an end.

In case you didn’t know...

Rio Ferdinand played alongside Cristiano Ronaldo under Sir Alex Ferguson and knows what the Portuguese is capable of and is always full of praise for the five time Ballon d'Or winner. The United legend has even faced Messi and knows a thing or two about the Argentine ace.

The debate between the two has shown no signs of declining even after Ronaldo switched to Juventus. Many of the greats have weighed in and given their honest opinions but Rio Ferdinand had a different response when asked about Leo Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.

The heart of the matter

With UEFA Champions League entering its decisive phases, tensions are rising with Leo Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo still going strong in the competition. Ronaldo, after turning the tie himself in favor of Juventus against Atletico Madrid was on the score sheet once again as he scored the only goal for the Old ladies against Ajax. Meanwhile Messi inspired Barca to an away win against Manchester United at the Old Trafford.

When Rio was asked to pick one amongst the two, he stated:

"We are blessed that we are in the presence of these two amazing footballers and it doesn't matter if you think one is better than the other at this stage."
"They are both just ridiculous talents and what puts them so far ahead of everyone else is their mental strength. That area of their game never ceases to amaze me and separates them from everyone else."
"To consistently want to do what they have done at that level for so long is not something many people have and, when you throw in their talent, it's an incredible combination."
"The joy for us as viewers is watching this incredible battle between two great players who are clearly being driven on by the fact they are playing in the same era of the game."
"If Ronaldo scores a hat-trick one night in the Champions League, you just know Messi will follow up the next night with a hat-trick of his own or some kind of crazy goal that only he can score. It's great and we should relish it. I think these two have definitely been driven on by each other and we have seen examples of how this works in other sports as well. "
"What Ronaldo and Messi are doing is just amazing, but I'm not surprised to see Cristiano at this level. From the moment we saw him at United, all of us in the dressing room said he was going to be the best player in the world and that is what he became.
"What's amazing with these two is they have not just been the best player in the world for one or two years, which was the norm up to this point. They have been the best players in the world for 10 and 12 years, which is ridiculous."

What's next?

Ronaldo and Messi would be going at it again against Ajax and United respectively in the second leg of the quarters to secure a semi final berth next week.