The rivalry between Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal has been widely acclaimed as the greatest in the history of tennis. The two have played each other 40 times, with Nadal leading Federer 24-16 in the head-to-head. However, the Swiss has managed to bag more Slams, standing at 20 compared to the Spaniard's 19.
Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal are, incidentally, first and second on the all-time Grand Slam leaderboard. Their reign, however, has been challenged by Novak Djokovic in recent times; the Serb has romped to 17 Major titles in the last decade, extending the duopoly of 'Fedal' to the trichotomy of the 'Big 3'.
The debate between the three for being called the greatest of all time has been raging fiercely over the last few years. Each of Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic has a plausible claim to the GOAT title, and there is no consensus among the fans or media so far.
But tennis is not the only sport where debates never reach a conclusion, as pointed out recently by Argentine sports personality Toti Pasman. The infinite debate for supremacy between Argentine first division clubs River Plate and Boca Juniors was brought up on Pasman's show "Radio La Red", and he compared them to the top tennis players.
The rivalry between the two most popular and successful Argentine clubs is commonly known as "Superclasico". In fact, in the year 2017 the Daily Mirror placed it at the No. 1 spot in the list of the top 50 football derbies in the world, above the El Clasico between FC Barcelona and Real Madrid C.F..
For Rafael Nadal, the maximum is to beat Roger Federer: Toti Pasman
The renowned TV personality gave his opinion on the rivalry between the two football clubs on his show, as he said:
"Doesn't River give too much importance to Boca? River has a complex with Boca that was overcome by Marcelo Gallardo. The final of the 2018 Copa Libertadores was like Del Potro winning the Wimbledon final against Roger Federer, like winning the final of the World Cup in Brazil."
The rivalry between Boca Juniors and River Plate has been at its fiery best lately. River Plate beat their top rivals 5–3 on aggregate in the 2018 Copa Libertadores final for their fourth Copa Libertadores title, with the second leg taking place outside South America - at the Santiago Bernabéu in Madrid.
"For River, the maximum was to beat Boca. For Boca, the maximum was beating Real Madrid. It's like, Real Madrid is Federer, Boca is Nadal and River is Del Potro. When River beat Boca that time in Madrid (in 2018), it was like that feat of Delpo. It puts Boca so high that it shows a very large inferiority complex from River," Pasman went on.
Perhaps Toti Pasman's analogy, linking the football clubs to Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, is not wide of the mark. Real Madrid and Boca Juniors played each other once, in the 2000 Intercontinental Cup. While Madrid were coming in as the 1999-2000 UEFA Champions League champions, Boca were the winners of the 2000 Copa Libertadores.
Boca Juniors would ultimately beat Madrid 2-1 in a match that would decide which team was the best in the world. The result was analogous to the rivalry of Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer at the biggest events, with the Spaniard having the advantage over his Swiss rival, leading him 10-4 at the Slams.Published 30 Jul 2020, 23:33 IST