The twenty first century football could not have been this interesting and competitive if not for Paris St German new recruit; Lionel Messi and Manchester United legend; Cristiano Ronaldo. The two footballers have broken and set new ones in nearly all the records in football. Ranging from assists, goals, to individual awards, the pair have given enough to the game of football and cannot be forgotten in a hurry.
Prior to the last Copa America that was hosted by Brazil and won be Argentina, Messi was criticized for his inability to win a major trophy with his national team at the senior level. A fit that was achieved by Cristiano Ronaldo with Portugal in the 2016 Euro and also in the Euro Nations league. When Argentina win the last Copa America against Brazil, fans of the two football icons shifted from the use of national trophy in their argument to the use of number of goals and other statistics.
Surprisingly, neither Cristiano Ronaldo nor Lionel Messi has won the world cup, and this has been used by some footballer enthusiasts and analysts as reason for ranking them behind people like Maradona and Pele. Although they have appeared in the tournament several times, lifting the trophy has been their highest challenge with the 2022 world cup to be hosted by Qatar likely going to be their last appearance in the tournament as Ronaldo is 36 and Messi 34 meaning that they may not participate in another world Cup after next year's edition and they will be 41 and 39 by 2026 world Cup.
Ronaldo's exploit spanned from Sporting CP, Manchester United, Real Madrid, Juventus to his national team Portugal, while Messi has been limited to his national team and Barcelona with his move to PSG expected to be a true test of his quality outside the Argentine national team and Barcelona. Messi's hattrick in Argentina World Cup qualifying match against Bolivia ensured that he overtook Pele as the record holder for the highest international goal in South America.
In comparison to his rival for the best footballer ever, who holds the record for the highest number of goals for national team with 111 goals, two above the former record; Messi still has over 30 goals to equal Ronaldo's record with both players still active. This implies that while Messi is just conquering the South American region, Ronaldo had long conquered Europe and he has crowned it with the world record for the highest goal in international male football. It is based on this that many rank Cristiano Ronaldo as the Greatest of at times (G.O.A.T).
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