Cristiano Ronaldo Settles GOAT Debate With Lionel Messi: "The Rivalry Between Us Is Over"

Cristiano Ronaldo Settles GOAT Debate With Lionel Messi: "The Rivalry Between Us Is Over"

Elijah Odetokun
September 28, 2023 at 1:07 PM
  • Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have been top of the football food chain for 15 years
  • The two departed Europe when Ronaldo moved to Al-Nassr and Messi joined Inter Miami
  • The Portuguese veteran may have just declared the unending debate between them over

Cristiano Ronaldo may have just delivered the most important press conference in history after giving his thoughts on the rivalry between him and Lionel Messi.

The two veterans stayed at the top of the football chain for 15 years, dating back to when Ronaldo won his first Ballon d'Or in 2008 and Messi his first in 2009.

Besides the Portuguese and Argentine, there have been only two others to lift the most coveted individual trophy in football since then - Luka Modric in 2018 and Karim Benzema in 2022.

Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, Real Madrid, Barcelona.
Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo shared a historic football rivalry. Photo by Power Sport Images.
Source: Getty Images

Ronaldo and Messi have since left Europe: the Manchester United veteran moved to Al-Nassr in the Saudi Pro League in January, while the 2022 World Cup winner moved to Inter Miami in the MLS in July.

Ronaldo settles GOAT debate with Messi

The raging and eternal debate on who is the greatest of all time between the two is one we may never see the end of, but Ronaldo's comments at Portugal's press conference may have put it to bed, per ESPN SportsCenter.

"If you like Cristiano, you are not obligated to dislike Messi. We've both changed the history of football and are respected," he said.
"The rivalry between us is over. We shared the stage for 15 years. I'm not saying we're friends, but we respect each other," he added.

The general belief is that what changed everything was Messi leading his country to victory at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar and becoming the most decorated footballer after winning the 2023 Leagues Cup with Inter Miami.

This was his 44th trophy, surpassing the legendary Dani Alves.

Nadal stylishly settles GOAT debate

Sports Brief previously reported on Rafael Nadal stylishly settling the GOAT debate, mixing honesty with diplomacy due to his association at various levels.

The tennis star picked Messi as the best but admitted he should have probably kept quiet as a fan of Real Madrid - a club Ronaldo starred at for nine years.

Elijah Odetokun photo
Elijah Odetokun
Editor- EPL I Serie A
Lionel MessiCristiano Ronaldo2022 FIFA World Cup