Lionel Messi, Cristian Ronaldo, Usain Bolt Included in Top 10 List of GOAT Athletes

Lionel Messi, Cristian Ronaldo, Usain Bolt Included in Top 10 List of GOAT Athletes

Edwin Kiplagat
updated at November 9, 2023 at 3:53 PM
In this article:
Cristiano Ronaldo logo
C. Ronaldo
Al Nassr FC logoFPortugal logo
Lionel Messi logo
Inter Miami CF logoFArgentina logo
  • Lionel Messi has been voted as the greatest athlete of all time
  • Messi's 2022 FIFA World Cup win cemented his status as the greatest footballer
  • Michael Jordan, Muhammad Ali, and Usain Bolt have been considered the GOAT athletes

Top 10 lists of greatest athletes of all time always rub some fans the wrong way.

Football stars Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have solid cases for GOAT status; Michael Jordan is by acclamation the greatest basketball player ever; while Usain Bolt is considered the greatest track athlete.

A popular social media page asked their followers who the GOAT athlete is, and the results were interesting.

Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, Michael Jordan, NBA, Argentina, Inter Miami, Chicago Bulls, LeBron James, Al-Nassr
Lionel Messi won his 8th Ballon d'Or last month. Photos by Sebastian Frej/MB Media, Noren Trotman/NBAE, and Pascal Le Segretain.
Source: Getty Images

Messi came out on top of the list, while Ronaldo was second. These two football legends have battled each other in Europe for over a decade, and they've got a lot to show for it.

Messi's FIFA World Cup win seemed to have settled the debate, but Ronaldo proponents are not letting go.

Boxing icon, the late Muhammad Ali, is arguably the greatest boxer ever. He was third on the list. Six-time NBA champion Michael Jordan was fourth, while Indian cricket superstar Virat Kohli was fifth.

Multiple world and Olympic champion Usain Bolt was sixth, Mike Tyson seventh, LeBron James eighth, Serena Williams ninth and Michael Phelps 10th. Pubity conducted the poll.

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Ronaldo settles GOAT debate

Sports Brief reported on Ronaldo settling the GOAT debate after declaring the rivalry between him and the Argentine over at a Portugal press conference. It lasted 15 years.

Football is awaiting its next generation of superstars to compete at the top level for the years to come. Kylian Mbappe and Erling Haaland are strong contenders.

James declares himself NBA GOAT

Sports Brief also reported on James declaring himself the best player ever as he closed in on breaking Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's long-standing record.

He has been the best NBA player of the last decade, and some believe he therefore has a right to say he is the greatest to touch the ball.

James became the NBA's all-time leading scorer earlier this year and has a serious claim to that title.

Edwin Kiplagat photo
Edwin Kiplagat
Edwin Kiplagat has five years of experience in journalism working as a Sports Editor at Africa Insight Communications and ESPN. Edwin Kiplagat is a Bachelor's Degree holder in journalism from the Multimedia University of Kenya.