Why Lionel Messi will overshadow Cristiano Ronaldo in the next few years
After 9 years of strong competition, here is why Ronaldo will finally lose the race to Messi.
Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have dominated the football world for the past 9 years playing at an unbelievable level, superior to every other player in their era. They have created an amazing duopoly sharing the last 9 Ballon d'Or awards between them. Many trophies, magical moments and personal achievements are proofs to their incredible greatness.
It is definitely very tough to split or stratify these players because they have both played consistently at the very top. Looking back in their time, there has been no season that these rivals were absent to challenge each other. The simple truth is, they have dominated and defined this current era together.
However, after following recent statistics and analysis, one can predict that someone is going to overtake the other in the future. And in line with that, Messi will overtake Ronaldo and this can be realised with a sincere consideration of the following reasons:
Ronaldo's age and the physical decline
The Cristiano Ronaldo we had in 2014 cannot be compared to the one we have in 2017. This is because days are passing and our hero is already getting old. He cannot pass, shoot, dribble, create chances, or even score goals as much as he did them before. His free kicks and goal ratio have also declined.
In fact, he is yet to record a goal in La Liga this season after featuring in 3 matches in which he played 270 minutes, contributing only one assist in the process. His average shots per game according to Whoscored, has reduced to 7.4 while his dribbles have also fallen to 1.6 per game. If such decline continues, he might not be able to carry on with the competition at the top.
The failure of Ronaldo to impress consistently is a big factor that could affect him in the future. In the previous season, he maintained only 2 goals up to the Quarterfinals of the UEFA Champions League before he picked his form. That same season, he often went 2, 3 or 4 games without scoring and could only manage 25 goals in La Liga, falling below his 30-goal mark for the first time in years.
This term, his inconsistency has continued, with the superstar scoring in only 2 matches out of the total 5 matches he played. This even gets worse if you remember that those 2 goals came only in the UEFA Champions League. Failure to stabilise his game could mean that he is already gifting his dominance to his rival.
Lionel Messi's Incredible Form
Lionel Messi seems unstoppable right now, even in an Argentine jersey considering what transpired against Equador! While Ronaldo at 32, is ageing and declining, Messi is only 30 years old and is not slowing down at all. He has been very consistent and promising, helping Barcelona overcome a very poor preliminary start to the season.
He has so far scored 11 goals and 2 assists in La Liga this term and has 2 goals to his name in the Champions League. With such form, Messi will definitely remain a dominant player in the next few years. With Messi's ability to adapt and play a more central role -- owing to his incredible vision -- he'll still be a top class playmaker if not a goal-scorer in a few years. And that is scary.