World Cup 2010: Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo or Wayne Rooney?

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PAUL MARK

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  • World Cup 2010: Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo or Wayne Rooney?

The FIFA World Cup obsession is at its peak, especially after some of the most amazing results seen in the first phase of the tournament. Already, fans have witnessed some major upsets which will be remembered for many years to come. Except Argentina, none of the big guns have impressed the critics so far and the game is missing the marvellous touches of some of the great players around. Lionel Messi, still a very young Argentinean, is the only player who has shown the marvellous football which was expected not only from him but also many other players. The 23 year old has been in headlines for almost three years now and is often compared with the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Wayne Rooney. The young player has proved that all these comparisons are no mere exaggerations, and has often risen above the performance of his contemporaries with his exceptional feats on the pitch, and indelible passion.

 

Messi’s last two seasons with his club Barcelona went amazing, as he bagged almost 85 goals and seven trophies in all. Although he was known to the game since quite a while back, his rise amongst the elite came after the 2008-09 season, in which he led Barcelona to record six trophies and won FIFA Player of the Year award along with many other prestigious honours. Immediately after rising to the top level, comparisons were drawn on who actually is the best player in the world. Few of the critics and fans still thought Ronaldo and Rooney were better than the diminutive Argentinean man, and they simply didn’t understood what the other half of critics were shouting about.

 

Often criticized for not delivering an equal level of performance for the Albicelestes (the Argentina National Football Team) as he has done for Barcelona, Messi produced a terrific performance in the very first match against the African squad, and could have easily netted a few goals but for the outstanding display from Nigerian goalkeeper Vincent Enyeama. Except for coming on the score sheet, he did play an amazing game, and indeed showed why he is the most admired player around the world. The way he moves on the pitch and makes the impossible possible has earned him billions of fans even out of Argentina. The second game was also no different, as once again against South Korea he was able to assist two goals and play a crucial part in the third one. He himself came closer to the net many a times and missed a couple of opportunities which were also created by him.

 

The way Messi has created chances in the first two matches are enough to send the world a message that Argentina means business and he will make it happen for them. The interesting thing to note is that no other player has shown any signs of what Messi has shown on the pitch. Ronaldo played under par in his first game, and had only one shot at the goal. He failed to impress his fans and didn’t cause trouble to defenders at all. At least now critics and fans must show respect to Lionel Messi, and stop comparing him with the Portuguese Ronaldo, who is far inferior to the Argentinean wizard.

 

Another big name to start the Cup was Wayne Rooney of the Three Lions. He had a marvellous season with Manchester United, and is rightly considered as second best after Messi. With such good form, he has also had the poorest of times on the pitch. He has not even created a single chance in this World Cup, even when he came close to the opponents’ net. His poor form at such a crucial moment is enough to call him out of the list, because after all, we are talking about the ‘Legends of the Game’, who have change the course of their nations’ histories with the toes of their feet.

 

All that said, now it is beyond any doubt that Messi is by far the current best player in the world. He is the most remarkable footballer of his generation and is far better than any of the comparisons that are attached with him. The only thing he has to prove is his inclusion amongst the likes of Maradona, Pele and other soccer legends. By winning the Cup for Argentina, he will definitely silence his critics, and ensure his rise to the slot of the best player in the history of this beautiful sport.

 

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