El Clasico is often considered the undisputed biggest rivalry in football as it has produced a clash of ideas, politics and styles of play consistently over the years. Being a part of either side meant that a player would automatically be embroiled in a personal feud with the opposition. In most cases, it would be between a defender and an attacker who often clash on the pitch. Gerard Pique vs Cristiano Ronaldo and Pepe vs David Villa have been some of the iconic parings in the last decade.
But none so have been most iconic as Sergio Ramos taking on Lionel Messi, two players who lay claim to being the best in history in what they do on the pitch. Ramos was the go-to man for Madrid, especially during the years of Jose Mourinho’s tenure at the club to stop the Argentine international by hook or by crook.
Since 2016, Ramos and Messi have been their clubs’ respective captains and while they exchanged pleasantries before kick-off, no love was lost during their Clasico encounters. The two players have been dedicated soldiers for their clubs since 2005 (Messi made his first-team debut in 2004) and both left their beloved clubs in the summer of 2021, to the same destination ironically.
There was much anticipation amongst football fans to witness Messi and Ramos be a part of the same team, and how the duo would cope at Paris Saint-Germain following the intense competitive encounters during their time in Spain.
During their first training session at the French club, the duo were spotted chatting like good friends as per images released by PSG. With Ramos now having recovered from his long-term injury, the duo were finally spotted starting a game together for the Parisians against Clermont on Saturday.
The game saw Kylian Mbappe and Neymar claim a hattrick each while Messi bagged a hat-trick of assists rounding off a 6-1 win for PSG. Following one of the goals assisted by the Argentine, Ramos was spotted embracing Messi in the celebrations which has surprised many football fans who have keenly followed their careers in Spain.
Some fans took to Twitter to harken back to the Clasico rivalry by joking that “deep down he (Ramos) wanna snap that (Messi’s) neck.” But the majority of fans online admired the players for their professionalism for having put aside their past differences and adapting to these new circumstances at the French club.
Having been eliminated from the UCL and the domestic cup competitions, PSG are now expected to close out their Ligue 1 title this season and the club would be hoping to rely on Messi and Ramos to lead them to European glory as teammates next season.