It's fair to say that Lionel Messi has enjoyed a far better 2022-23 season than Cristiano Ronaldo so far. While the Portuguese has been relegated to a bit-part role at Manchester United, the Argentine playmaker has been in scintillating form for Paris Saint-Germain.
Fox Sports soccer analyst Alexi Lalas believes the seven-time Ballon d'Or winner's brilliant start to the season is hurting his eternal rival's legacy. On the “State of the Union Podcast, Lalas said:
“I stand for Ronaldo in this evergreen back and forth between Messi and Ronaldo. However, it gets a little bit more difficult, especially at the moment right now when people ask you that evergreen question and you come up with Ronaldo, especially relative to what Messi is doing with club and country right now.
“I think his legacy is being hurt right now. And everybody has a twilight of their career, and a lot of times it’s not playing, it’s not scoring, and you’re a shell of your former self. I get that."
"Very few actually go out on high, but Messi still hasn’t had that, and it remains to be seen whether he will ever have that”
It goes without saying that Lionel Messi is finally back at the top of his game after a slow start to life in Paris last season. The attacker has bagged seven goals and eight assists for PSG in 12 appearances across all competitions so far. He also bagged four goals for Argentina in two games during the last international break.
Cristiano Ronaldo, meanwhile, has struggled for playing time at Manchester United this season. The attacker has made just three starts for the Red Devils across all competitions, with only one goal to his name.
Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo eyeing World Cup glory
Both superstars will get the opportunity to lead their respective nations to glory in what could be their final appearance at the FIFA World Cup.
Lionel Messi and Argentina will face-off against the likes of Mexico, Poland and Saudi Arabia in Group C. Cristiano Ronaldo and Portugal will compete against Ghana, Uruguay and South Korea in Group H. It remains to be seen what fate has in store for them in the tournament.