Opinion: Cristiano Ronaldo could become the GOAT by winning the Champions League with Juventus
Ask Cristiano Ronaldo who the greatest of all time is, and he will name himself without even flinching. In his own mind, he has always been the greatest of all time. He went on to claim this in an interview after winning his fifth Ballon d'Or back in December last year, and tying the record of his arch nemesis Lionel Messi in the process.
Since then, he has gone to great lengths to prove that he can truly lay claim to the title of being the 'GOAT'. Whether it be his 'goatee' at the World Cup, or casual pictures posted on Instagram with t-shirts reading 'GOAT' tactically placed in the background. Cristiano Ronaldo seems obsessed with being recognised as the greatest of all time.
Ronaldo's case for being the 'GOAT' rings hollow when compared to his long time rival, Lionel Messi. With legends like Lampard, Xavi, Gerrard and even Ronaldo's old teammate at Manchester United - Wayne Rooney, openly claiming the Argentine to be the greatest player ever to kick a football, it is hard to argue against the little magician.
The edge Messi holds over Ronaldo is his ability to be both the primary goalscorer as well as the playmaker for his team at one and the same time. He holds the record for both highest goals and highest assists in La Liga history. But even more amazing than the records is his unrivaled ability to find his teammates from any part of the pitch.
The Argentine is like three players rolled into one, where all three of them are the best in the world at their respective jobs.
While his Portuguese counterpart has the propensity to disappear when the service from midfield is cut off, Messi can win games completely on his own. This was never more evident than when he went to the Santiago Bernabeu last year and gunned down Real Madrid 3-2 almost single-handedly.
Yet for all the little man's brilliance, he has never tasted much success outside of Barcelona. He has stayed loyal to his childhood club through the years, deciding to never leave, although it would be hard to imagine he was never offered more money to play elsewhere.
Despite taking Argentina to multiple finals including the 2014 World Cup final, Messi has never managed to cross that last hurdle and bring home the trophy for his country.
Ronaldo on the other hand has conquered Europe with Manchester United, Portugal and Real Madrid, if he manages to do so with Juventus as well, it will be very difficult to argue against the Portuguese goal machine's case for being the 'GOAT'.
Although his decision to leave Real Madrid for Juventus this summer might have baffled his fans all over the world, the move might be a calculated risk on the part of Ronaldo. And it is a risk that he is happy to take, knowing that on the other side of it lies immortality.