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Xherdan Shaqiri gives the best possible response when asked to choose between Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have bagged a combined 12 Ballon d
Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have bagged a combined 12 Ballon d'Or awards.

Switzerland star Xherdan Shaqiri has deftly side-stepped the eternal debate when asked to pick between Argentina and Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) star Lionel Messi and Portugal captain Cristiano Ronaldo.

Both players have been at loggerheads with each other for more than 15 years in their respective quests to reach newer goalscoring heights.

While Messi led from the front for Barcelona for most of his professional career, Ronaldo dominated the scoring charts in La Liga during his nine-year stint at Real Madrid. The pair guided their respective clubs to multiple domestic titles and UEFA Champions League crowns.

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo both posted a photo together โšฝ๏ธ๐Ÿ https://t.co/18tLtq3mFr

During a recent interview with The Athletic, Shaqiri was asked to choose between Messi and Ronaldo, who are both in the twilight of their careers at the ongoing 2022 FIFA World Cup. He responded:

"This is always a good question for everybody. These two guys, what they have done for football over the past 20 years, is unbelievable. I don't know if someone will come again like them."

Heaping praise on the pair, the Chicago Fire ace added:

"It's something extraordinary. They are big idols for a lot of young players. For me, they are both up there with [Diego] Maradona and Pele. They are the same level as them."

Messi, who has bagged a record seven Ballon d'Or awards, is currently on a quest to end Argentina's 36-year wait for the FIFA World Cup trophy in Qatar. Ronaldo, on the other hand, is also on a mission to complete his illustrious trophy cabinet with the prestigious trophy.

During their respective careers, both players have recorded staggering statistics in and around the penalty box. While the diminutive Argentine has scored 787 goals and laid out 384 assists in 997 games across club and country level, the five-time Ballon d'Or winner has netted 818 goals and registered 266 assists in 1140 overall matches.

"We have not had dinner together yet, but I hope so in the future.""It's great to be a part of the history of football. I am there, and of course, he is as well."Magnificent.Cristiano Ronaldo speaks on his relationship with Lionel Messi ๐Ÿ™ https://t.co/HbicSaS6NW

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo could play in 2026 World Cup, says FIFA chief

Speaking to beIN SPORTS, FIFA president Gianni Infantino insisted that Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo could be a part of the 2026 FIFA World Cup in USA, Canada and Mexico. He said:

"If it's really the last World Cup, they will decide it by themselves. I was reading about this in the last few days. If one of them wins it, it will certainly crown his career and maybe the other will then try to win the next one. And because the other doesn't like to lose, he'll come back.''

He added:

"The fact that they maybe think that this is their last World Cup, even unconsciously will make them perform probably at the highest level they have ever performed in their career."

Both players are currently representing their nations for the fifth time in the 2022 FIFA World Cup, taking place in Qatar. Despite lifting their respective continental tournaments, neither have been successful in achieving success at the grandest stage of world football.

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Edited by Diptanil Roy
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