Watched by over two-thirds the world’s population, it wouldn’t demand brains to guess its football (not the American version). Its activity and market has made it noticeable while it’s past and the superstars that it never fails to nurture, has made it all the more enticing. But one thing certainly managed to pull my grey matter out of its comfort zone and keep it guessing..........
Why only RONALDO or MESSI?
It’s no secret that someone who has scant knowledge about football can answer this question as he already would have picked his side thanks to a match in which the player would have caught his eye or a supposedly ‘dude’ish discussion with his mates wherein he would have picked a side to keep hovering around the fact that “I am cool and I support him”. He can’t be running farther from truth as he tries to spin facts out of thin air. But being a football fanatic, these discussions have always sounded alien to me. Its amazing hearing people compare them with self formulated parameters. For instance, few opine that Messi is superior because he scored more goals than Ronaldo. But they fail to take into account the importance of the goals scored and the fashion in which they were scored. Never could Messi head the ball off his ground and into the net. God only knows how many of Messi’s goals came in insignificant matches (This doesn’t mean I’m biased). The list goes on. Reasons pile and arguments never end.
But why only Ronaldo or Messi?
Football has produced many legends who have stepped up for their clubs and countries, throwing aside their egos and differences. Those who failed to do so, well, football hasn’t been too amiable to them. But this particular question has demanded many football brains fight for nothing than dig the past and predict the future. The world has forgotten the likes of Wayne Rooney who is reduced to a second category icon as he himself is forced to make a bargain in this discussion. Some others like Zlatan Ibrahimovic have relentlessly tried to show their presence and have let their ego and self obsessions do the talking though the world never bothered. Then come the Neymars who have been basking in their personal glory in distant arenas, far away from where all the action is or at least, the focus is. The best Neymar could do is to make sure he was compared to Messi.
There was an era when the great players were simply coined as great. Not a Pele or a Maradona. There were players like Emilio Butrageno, Alfredo Di Stefano and Puskas who represented Real Madrid and were considered superior strata. But rarely did they ask for a wage hike or more ‘love’ from the club. They could only give it to their country, club and fans. So were many others. But this Ronaldo-Messi-never-ending-debate has only managed to:
- Propel their egos to an extent that Ronaldo has recently made the famous SAD remark
- Overshadow great players like Xavi, Iniesta, Xabi Alsonso and the Manchester United legend Paul Scholes(as he retires come the end of this season, which, to my dread, I saw in a facebook post).
- Confine all the action to the La Liga(Spain) and EPL (due to its world-wide reach), and blissfully neglect Serie A (Italy), BundesLiga (Germany) and many other leagues.
- Refer to it indirectly that Real Madrid and Barcelona are the only teams in La Liga.
- Nurture critics who, with preconceived bias, write baseless articles expecting people to read and get convinced.
- Finally, keep people like me guessing if it will ever end.
Having seen players like Zidane, Scholes, Luis Ronaldo , Del Piero, Beckham, Iniesta, Casillas (the list goes on) and many, I fail to comprehend this comparison and the reason as to why the world needs such open ended orchestra where the critics sing in cacophony, thusly, never reaching to an agreement. It can never do the footballing world any good, but can’t prevent it from neglecting the young blood or forgetting the wise-heads of football. Though I end this discussion saying it is high time for the debate to end, I can barely see brighter pastures.
( I have made my choice long ago.)