In the endless debate surrounding Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, the former has aid from arguably football’s greatest-ever player.
Brazil legend Pele has brought his opinion about who is the current world’s best between Ronaldo and Messi – with the three-time World Cup winner plumping for Ronaldo.
Ronaldo and Messi have been considered as the world’s main duo for more than a decade – sharing eleven Ballon d’Or awards between them.
But in spite of Messi edging that battle (six titles to five), Pele would as a substitute have Ronaldo in his team.
‘Today the best player in the world is Cristiano Ronaldo,’ he told YouTube channel Pilhado.
‘I think he is the best, due to the fact he is more consistent, however you cannot overlook about [Lionel] Messi, of course, however he is not a striker.’
Although, the 79-year-old was effusive in his praise of Ronaldo he did point out that there have been some legendary figures before him and Messi. And when comparing the duo to legendary names of the day past – there was no doubt in his thinking who comes out on top… himself.
‘It is a question that is hard to answer,’ he answered when asked who is the best to have played the lovely game. ‘We can’t overlook about Zico, Ronaldinho and Ronaldo.
‘And in Europe, Franz Beckenbauer and Johan Cruyff.
‘Now, it is not my fault, however I think Pele was better than them all.’
Speaking last week about his health, Pele once again denied claims that he is struggling to come to terms with his mobility issues after undergoing a hip operation.
The former Brazil striker’s son Edinho told TV Globo last month that his father was ’embarrassed’ to leave home due to his hip issues, which causes ‘a certain depression’.
But Pele, broadly regarded one of the best footballers to ever play the game, has insisted those close to him ‘invented that I was depressed’ and that, in reality, he is ‘fine’.
‘This depression thing, I don’t understand if they got it wrong due to the fact in the last two years I had a bruise, a femur operation and then, when I commenced training or making a commercial, I had to stop,’ he told CNN.
‘They started to fear and I truly appreciate it, however then they invented that I was depressed. I got right here with a walker but, thank God, I only can’t ride a bike.
‘Even some of the instances when I was hurt, bruised, I did not fail to give an interview and I stated that I was unhappy due to the fact I had been injured.
‘That is precisely what I am going to talk about now: I would rather have arrived here without a walker, doing a little training, playing ball. But I’m convalescing and, thank God, after everything I’ve done in sports, I’m fine. Thank goodness I’m recovering.’
Pele has suffered from hip trouble for a number of years and now wishes a frame to walk. Many of his current public appearances have been in a wheelchair.
‘He’s exceedingly fragile. He had a hip replacement and did not have an adequate or ideal rehabilitation,’ Edinho stated last month.
‘So he has this problem with mobility and that has set off a sort of depression. Imagine, he is the King, he was once always such an imposing figure and today he can not walk properly.
‘He’s embarrassed, he doesn’t want to go out, be seen, or do virtually whatever that involves leaving the house. He is very sheepish, reclusive.’
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