What if Ronaldo had been signed up by Barcelona at 13?

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This argument about Cristiano Ronaldo being better than Messi because he performed in more than one club is very one-sided and circumstantial. Ronaldo started out at a modest club in Sporting Lisbon which was too small as a club to keep hold of his extraordinary talent. Then he moved to Man Utd which though are a great club, but contrary to the feelings of its adoring fans are still short of the level of greatness of either of the two La Liga giants Real Madrid and Barcelona.

Ronaldo believed he was the best and felt his talents were bigger than Man Utd and hence he did not waste time in moving to a bigger club, immediately Madrid came calling. Madrid were also able at the time to afford his salary demands. Ronaldo remained in Madrid for 9 years and was hugely successful and could have finished his career in Madrid until the club no longer believed that he was worth the increasing salary demands he was making, even at the age of 33. Contrary to statements ‘sold’ to the media by the player and his representatives about leaving because he wanted a new challenge, Ronaldo only left because he had issues with the club president. Had Madrid offered him the contract he wanted, he would have retired in the club. Madrid simply felt he was trying to hold them to ransom and was no longer worth the money he was demanding for. Madrid has mostly been criticized for not showing enough respect to its legends like other top clubs and he left the club because he felt he was no longer getting the respect he feels he deserves.

Now let’s look at Messi’s background. He was signed by Barcelona who are the second biggest club in the world at the age of 13 years and has since become synonymous with the club. Messi has since his signing been satisfied with the club and has never had any contract dispute with the club. If we put Ronaldo in Messi shoes being a 13 year old player being signed by Barcelona and rose to the height of being considered by many as the greatest of all time, without having any issues with the club, would he have moved? Answer is an emphatic NO! Ronaldo’s moves were more purely because of financial reasons. Hence such argument does not qualify as a valid point to determine who is greater between the two.

-Amazuo Ugboaja

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