It’s an age old debate. Who’s the best player in the world? The question that everyone wants an answer to, but the answer is one that is rarely universally accepted. But what really defines the best player in the world?
We have the obvious qualities: consistency and impact, be it through goals, assists, defensive prowess or clean sheets. Other characteristics could be leadership, grit, and panache, to name a few.
Crucial factors are individual honors and trophies, both for club and country. Over the past decade or so, the title for best player in the world has been a battle of the attackers, with Messi and Ronaldo fighting it out to be the best.
Both of them are serial winners, individually and collectively for their teams, and both push each other to strive for greater heights.
Being the lethal attackers that they are, they have provided us with some break-neck battles and tons of goals and memorable plays.
And while fans debate who is the best of these two, one question comes up more often than not, and it’s answer is one we may not receive.
Goals against “top 6” PL teams (Man City, Man United, Chelsea, Liverpool, Arsenal, Tottenham) in their careers –
Messi: 26 goals in 33 games;
Cristiano: 28 goals in 70 games.
Who needs to prove in the PL by the way?
— Fiaz Hamzath (@fiaz_hamzath) May 1, 2019
Can Lionel Messi do it in the Premier League? This is probably what differentiates Big Ron and Messi, given that Ronaldo has played in different leagues and experienced different cultures and flourished in all of them, during his time at Sporting Lisbon, Manchester United, Real Madrid and most recently, at Juventus.
Defying age, Ronaldo seems to have the advantage over Messi in the pursuit for the answer to this question, with Messi being the one-club man that he is at Barcelona.
It truly has been his one criticism, whether he would be able to achieve and maintain his otherworldly levels in England.
In one season alone, Lionel Messi has scored two goals against Spurs, two goals against Manchester United, and two goals against Liverpool.
He’s the greatest player of all time in Spain, and if he wasn’t so loyal to Barcelona, he’d be the greatest player of all time in England.
— Breaking The Lines (@BTLvid) May 1, 2019
But Leo’s numbers against big English sides seem to give us a fair idea of what he could achieve in the Prem.
The stats that surfaced after Barca’s 3-0 semi-final win over Liverpool (in which he was extremely influential) suggest that Messi could just ace it in England. One stat compares his goals to games tally against England’s big 6 to that of Ronaldo’s, while another shows us that this season, he has more goals against the PL’s top 6 than any other PL player!
The significance and takeaway of this must not be undermined. Messi’s goals and top-notch performances against the best in England, have come at crucial stages in Europe’s elite club competition.
Not to mention, of late, Leo has been unstoppable against England’s UCL participating crew, as this season alone he’s bagged two goals each against Spurs, Liverpool and Manchester United. If he can do it against the best, one would be led to believe that he could do it against the rest.
Messi’s numbers speak for him, and while we may never see him in the Prem, we have a visual of how he would fare in England. In a hypothetical situation where Messi joins the Premier League, which club would suit him the most?