Both Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi are the focal points of any club they represent. While their rivalries on the field are over, their debate to be the greatest of all time is one that will rage on for many more years.

The two have consistently shown contrasting styles throughout their careers. Messi was the brains and flair of Barcelona. Ronaldo typified Real Madrid as the technologically advanced miracle that he was. Both dominated the game with very different approaches to the game.

When it comes to their on-field performances, they are icons. It is possible to admire both players and their respective playing styles. Not making a decision is okay.

What did Ronaldo say about rivalry with Messi?

That is what Cristiano thinks, too. The two superstars have had an intense rivalry in the previous years. Now, the Portuguese claims it is all in the past.

“The rivalry is over. It was good, a healthy rivalry that spectators liked a lot. Whoever likes Cristiano Ronaldo doesn’t have to hate Messi or vice-versa, because they’re both very good. They changed the history of soccer, and they keep on doing it,” he was quoted as saying by BBC.

“We are respected throughout the world, that’s the most important thing. He makes his way, I make mine, even if we are playing outside Europe. He has done well, from what I’ve seen, and so have I.

“It’s about continuing. The legacy continues. The rivalry, I don’t see things like that. I’ve already said, we’ve shared the stage for 15 years and we ended up being, I wouldn’t say friends, because I never dined with him, but we are professional colleagues, and we respect each other.”

Fans’ rivalry between Messi and Ronaldo lives on forever

Most individuals, though, will have to choose one or the other. Most individuals will have a strong preference for one over the other. However, it is not necessary. That sums up Cristiano Ronaldo’s point perfectly.

The fascinating nature of this rivalry stems from the fact that both players have existed and dominated at the same time. Although Pele and Diego Maradona’s careers did not intersect, we cannot help but draw parallels between them.

PHOTO: IMAGO / Nicolo Campo