For this week’s Six of One, we’re asking: Ronaldo or Messi?
The ongoing argument over who is modern football’s GOAT provokes plenty of debate.
Separating perhaps the two greatest players of all time is an unenviable task, but Marathonbet never shirk a challenge.
The case for…. Ronaldo
— Real Madrid C.F. 🇬🇧🇺🇸 (@realmadriden) April 3, 2018
The starting point for any fiery Ronaldo/Messi debate has to start with the ‘Grimsby Town question.’
Picture the scenario: you are the manager of traditional strugglers Grimsby Town. You have one match to save your season. In a wildly implausible turn of events, both Ronaldo and Messi have released themselves from lucrative contracts to dedicate themselves to the cause of saving The Mariners. But you only have the budget to allow one to grace the Blundell Park pitch.
Who would be the better fit in this scenario?
For many, it would be the 33-year-old Portuguese, who even aside from all his technical brilliance and goalscoring prowess, seems to have the slight edge on Messi in terms of brute force, pure goalscoring instinct and will-to-win.
Look at Ronaldo’s antics from the sidelines in Euro 2016 where he took on the role as de facto manager – whereas Messi can often cut a dejected figure in an Argentina side failing to meet his high standards.
Winning silverware after silverware in two major leagues also suggests Cristiano is far more comfortable being thrown in at the deep end and adapting to new challenges. It’s a tired old cliché, but for many purists, Ronaldo will always have an edge on Messi until the day the Argentinian leaves home comforts behind and proves himself on a ‘cold Tuesday night in Stoke’.
The case for… Messi
— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) April 4, 2018
Yes, Ronaldo regularly conjures up magical moments such as ‘that goal’ on Tuesday night, but for Messi’s millions of fans, no-one comes close to showcasing pure aesthetic perfection with a football than the 30-year-old Barcelona superstar. For those on the Messi side of the debate, Ronaldo may be the ultimate goalscoring competitor – but the Argentinian is the game’s greatest artist.
How often has Messi created something out of nothing to completely turn a key European tie on its head? Sometimes it can appear the midfield maestro is so many steps ahead in his vision, movement and decision-making, the ball is in the back of the net before the mere mortal human brain has enough time to process the information – as many world class defenders will testify.
Messi is also that rare breed in modern life – the epitome of a one-club man, elevating his team mates to reach new standards, dictating his side’s rhythm at all times.
Barcelona are slowly having to face the reality of life after Messi within the next half decade – and it’s doubtful they will ever be able to hit the same heights without a once-in-a-generation genius pulling the strings in midfield.
So who is the greatest of all time?
Ronaldo…Messi… Messi… Ronaldo. It’s just too hard.
Maybe, as some pundits have suggested, it’s time to call the whole debate off, take a step back and appreciate we were here on Earth when two footballing Gods collided.
You’ve heard our thoughts – now we want to hear your suggestions for which one you would have in your side if you were forced to choose. And one thing is for sure: Grimsby wouldn’t be too fussy…
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All image sources from PA Images