Diego Maradona explains why Lionel Messi will never be as good as he was

Argentina's coach Diego Maradona (L) loo

Despite the fact that Cristiano Ronaldo picked up his fifth Ballon d'Or award in Paris last week, there are many who will say that Lionel Messi deserved the accolade.

The Argentine is the top scoring player in 2017 and also played a pivotal role in Argentina's World Cup qualification, scoring a hat trick vs Ecuador in their final must-win game.

However, the fact that Ronaldo's goals guided Real Madrid to both the Champions League and La Liga meant he was always going to be the winner, despite the fact his form has been pretty inconsistent this year.

Both he and Messi are widely regarded as the two finest to have played the game, mainly due to their sheer goal scoring power.

But, Argentine legend Diego Maradona believes there's one negative to Messi's game that means he will never reach his level.

The 1986 World Cup winner explained exactly why in an interview with AS.


Interviewer: "Who is the best ever in your opinion?"

Maradona: "For me… From the little that I saw, Alfredo Di Stéfano, Cruyff… And Messi. Cristiano could be up there too."

Villarreal v Barcelona - La Liga

Interviewer: "What is Lionel Messi missing in order to be Maradona?

Maradona: "No, that can’t be bought. That comes from inside, as standard. Messi wouldn’t be capable of giving a talk to 20 players, all sat down, like I’ve just done there to motivate them. He would say: “What do you want to ask me, lads?”. The lads would ask him questions."

Interesting stuff.

It is quite common knowledge that Messi is a fairly reserved player, rarely snapping or shouting at others.

However, his leadership abilities cannot be questioned too much, particularly after the amount of times he has had to drag both Barcelona and Argentina out of some very sticky situations.

FC Barcelona v Sporting CP - UEFA Champions League


Interviewer: "So, what do you think of Cristiano?"

Maradona: "Marvellous."

Interviewer: "What do you like about him?"

Maradona: "The definition. Another of the things that I recognise in Cristiano Ronaldo is that when the team needs him, he’s there. He has that. And eh, listen, after ‘El Flaco’ Cruyff, there weren’t many players who have had that quality."

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