Samir Nasri has given his opinion on the Lionel Messi vs Cristiano Ronaldo debate

West Ham United v Birmingham City - Emirates FA Cup Third Round

Samir Nasri made a surprising return to the Premier League this month with West Ham United.

Having initially made his name in England with Arsenal, the Frenchman would go on to win the league with Manchester City in 2012 and 2014.

However, as the reign of Manuel Pellegrini rumbled on, Nasri's form started to decline and many assumed his departure from the Etihad Stadium would see him leave English football for good. 

The 31-year-old failed to inspire during a loan spell with Sevilla and a permanent switch to Antalyaspor, not to mention a shock doping ban complicating matters further.

But a move to West Ham offers the chance for redemption and Nasri has made a promising start to life in east London, producing a match-winning assist against former side Arsenal.

Nasri returns with West Ham

There's no doubting that Nasri has incredible raw ability, he just hasn't been able to reach his full potential or show his quality on a consistent basis.

That said, football fans still remember some of his finest performances when he first moved to England and that period of his career saw him face some of the world's best players.

Included in that premier list of opponents are none other than Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi with whom he locked horns with at Arsenal.

Manchester United v Arsenal - UEFA Champions League

Nasri on Ronaldo vs Messi

And as part of his press duties upon moving to West Ham, he filmed a video with the club where he answered a series of 50:50 questions.

That, naturally, included the eternal Messi vs Ronaldo debate and Nasri provided more than just a one-word answer, nailing his colours to the mast but also giving a mature assessment.

Without hesitation, Nasri replied: "Lionel Messi, just because I think he is gifted by God.

"Cristiano Ronaldo is more of a professional, hard worker guy.

"But I love... I love football and so for me, it's Messi. Messi is everything about football.

"Ronaldo is the example to follow if you want to be... you know."

Fair play, Samir.

At the centre of the Messi vs Ronaldo debate is the idea that the former is a product of remarkable talent and the latter has fought incredibly hard for his achievements.

In truth, Ronaldo has talent just as much as Messi has worked incredibly hard, but with the Juventus man more overt in his determination, it's hard to argue with Nasri's answer if you're pro-Messi.

Barcelona v Arsenal - UEFA Champions League

Supporters sharing his opinion will also be keen to reiterate the beauty of Messi's performances, whereas Ronaldo is perhaps more associated with athletic brilliance.

So, while many footballers can often sit on the fence or give limited answers, it's hard not to respect Nasri for his honest assessment after playing against them both.

But we're sorry Samir, it just won't end football's fiercest debate.

Who do you think is the better player - Ronaldo or Messi? Have your say in the comments section below.

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