Pele vs Maradona: Recapping the war of words between the two greats

Special guest of honour Pele (centre) speaking to Michel Platini (9) as Diego Maradona listens in prior to the Football League Centenary match between the Football League XI and the Rest of the World XI held at Wembley Stadium, London on 8th August 1987. The Football League XI won 3-0

Recently, Diego Maradona reignited his feud with arch nemesis Pele, declaring Pele’s FIFA Family award as “not worth sh*t”.

It’s always pure comedy gold when these two veterans have a go at each other. Here are the best bits from their decades-old war:

On who is better, Messi or Neymar?


There’s always this Maradona comparison, saying that he’s better than Pele. Now some are saying that Messi is better than Pele.

Well, he (Messi) has to be better than Neymar first, which he isn’t yet. He has more experience.


My God, that is just stupid! Maybe Neymar is the best player in the world, but only if you say that Messi is from a different planet.

It seems Pele took the wrong medication. Instead of taking his night pill, he took the morning pill. He got confused and didn’t know what he was talking about … I suggest next time he take the right pills before making any suggestions and that he should change his doctor.

On drug abuse in football


It is unfair to talk about drugs in football because of just one or two cases, like Ronaldo and Robinho, who have that problem.

He (Maradona) was an excellent player but unfortunately everyone can see what he has done with his life.


What do you want me to say? He (Pele) debuted (lost his virginity) with a lad (a man)!

On the best ever footballer


(Maradona cannot be considered the best ever player as) he couldn’t kick well with his right foot and he didn’t score headed goals.

The only important headed goal that Maradona ever scored was scored with his hand!


I think I’m the best player ever. Why would you compare me to Pele? My mother said that I’m stronger and that he used to play with players who didn’t even move on the pitch.

I don’t like comparisons with Pele because of the stupid things he says. He keeps on saying stupid stuff when he takes the wrong pills.

On the FIFA Footballer of the Century award


I came out on top in terms of votes and the opinions of the fans. Pelé came second.

Even in Brazil (Pele came second), where Ayrton Senna was voted the most popular Brazilian sportsperson of all time.

As I’ve already won so much in my career Pelé’s friends needed to give him some sort of recognition (the award of ‘Second Best Footballer of the Century’), which really means absolutely nothing!

Pele (?)

Whilst their rivalry has descended into a school-yard fight and it is depressing to see two highly decorated footballers sling mud at each other over petty issues, there is no denying the fact that these constant feuds are a source of entertainment.

And since this a trend that has been going on for years, expect Pele to come up with a strong riposte, adding more fuel to the fire and keeping the age-old war going for a few more years.

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Edited by Staff Editor
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