So does Ronaldo winning the Euro 2016 actually prove that Cristiano Ronaldo is better than Leo Messi? Well a certain section of fans and football pundits think so, for instance Goal.com’s Peter Staunton thinks that Euro 2016 wins puts Ronaldo above Messi. While a Certain section think that Messi Legacy is too big for Ronaldo to overleap on the basis of a single Euro Cup. Well the opinions are certainly divided and it will be divided till both of them keep playing and maybe even after that, So here is my personal opinion on the biggest sporting debate of this decade.
Well to answer it simply I would say NO this victory does not put Ronaldo over Messi, yes Ronaldo has won a major trophy with his national team, something which Messi hasn’t achieved till now, but does it means Messi is a failure at international stage? No absolutely not let’s take a look at few of Messi achievements at International stage
- Messi is the all time top scorer for Argentina with 55 goals.
- Messi holds the record for highest no of Hatricks (4) scored by an Argentinean.
- Most goals scored in a year (national team): 12 goals (2012) (shared with Gabriel Batistuta)
- Won the best Player award at 2014 World Cup
- Won Olympic Goal Medal with Argentina.
- Won U-20 World cup with Argentina.
This are just few of Messi achievement with Argentina, the list goes on and on, So we can safely Conclude that Messi is not a failure at International Stage.
Now coming to debate of why Messi is still far ahead of Ronaldo, it’s something that no stats can explain you have to watch both of them closely to understand the difference, Ronaldo needs to score a goal to have a positive impact on the game, on the other hand Messi without even scoring can put in a MOTM performance, such is the impact of Messi on the playing field. He does a lot more than just scoring, & assists , he drags 3 or 4 defenders with him leaving his fellow attackers with plenty of free space , as can be seen in the recent years at Barcelona Neymar & Suarez gets ample of free space cause Messi drags most of the defender with him. Most coaches know that unless you employ atleast 2-3 players to continuously man mark Messi he can destroy them completely. Plus if you look at their attitude while playing Messi almost never dives and try to stay on his feet as long as possible, on other hand Ronaldo despite being at the most matured peak of his career still dives,and look for fouls and freekick instead of trying to stay on his feet.
On other Hand Ronaldo is more of Goal scorer than a Complete player, Of course no doubt he is a fantastic world-class player and possibly the best Goal scorer of all time, but he is definitely not better than Messi. He is a great leader no doubt and way he inspired his team from the bench after getting off due to injury was truly inspirational. But here’s why he is not the greatest just because of this win. Ronaldo had a good tournament, but it’s not that he single-handedly took them to the finals, and in the final he didn’t even play due to the injury, and thus it is safe to say Portugal did it without Cristiano Ronaldo. And if you consider taking his team to final as the reason for him being greatest player of this generation, then Messi did it three-time in three years including taking his team to a world cup final in Brazil 2 years back. Plus Messi would have won a World cup and a Copa America if Higuain and Aguero would have converted the simple chance that they got.
And if we look down in history many players who are considered the greatest player of their Generation have also been unable to win a major trophy with their national team. Paolo Maldini is undoubtedly the greatest defender ever to play and he has not won a single big title with Italy.Sergio Ramos & Carlos Puyol who are considered the greatest defender of this decade both have won the world cup as well as 2 euro’s but still the greatest defender of all time is still associated with Maldini. Similar can said in case of another Barcelona legend cruyff , he was considered the best player of the 70’s and is still considered the best European player of all time despite not winning a single major title with his Country.
Just like history suggest Messi legacy wouldn’t diminish because of his rival winning a major International Trophy, He is still the greatest player of this Generation and possibly the greatest player of all time or as his fans like to call him Messi is simply a G.O.A.T.