Portugal World Cup Squad Photos

Ruben Holloway
June 15, 2018

The skycam dips in, gliding past the number seven in red and the number ten in white and blue, multiple times, throughout the game. Coach Gernot Rohr will look to utilise the pace at his disposal on the counter, while captain Jon Obi Mikel is very important to the Super Eagles, dictating the play in midfield at ripe old age of 31.

Most football writers agree that we will never see such a great rivalry again and picking one as better is tough.

Kolkata's love for football is legendary but, with every World Cup, that love is scaling new heights. Regarded as one of the best footballers of all time, he is a five-time victor of Ballon d'Or award.

Despite his towering achievements at Barcelona, La Albiceleste's all-time leading goal-scorer has not been able to translate his club success at the worldwide level.

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Such history of suffering fitness issues in worldwide tournaments impacted Argentina in which his absence denied La Albiceleste such a significant creative force that could have lifted Messi to the winners' pedestal.

"He scores as many as Ronaldo but he does everything else as well".

Argentina only made it to the finals courtesy of a Messi hat-trick in their final qualifier against Ecuador. However in order to give his fans the opportunity to finally erase any doubts about him being better than Pele, he must win that coveted prize, any less would be considered a blotch of the so far impeccable record of the little magician. "At Manchester United it was already incredible the number of goals he was scoring but in Real Madrid he's become even more complete". Greg Johnson, editor-in-chief of the website "Football.London", believes Ronaldo has shown more adaptability than his rival throughout his career.

Global honours have evaded Messi despite his success at club level with Argentina beaten in the Copa America final in 2015 and 2016. Ronaldo, meanwhile, has 13 caps, three goals and two assists for Portugal, with his best finish coming in 2006 when Portugal finished in fourth. We know now that Spain went on to win the World Cup in 2010. "There is much to admire in that".

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How tragic things might have been had Messi not gone back on his decision to quit the national team following a Copa America final defeat to Chile two years ago.

Kari Arnason, the Iceland defender, had suggested at the time that Ronaldo's sour remarks illustrated "why Messi is always going to be one step ahead of him". He would be viewed as the greatest player of all time. For the former, think Real Madrid and Ronaldo and for the latter think Barcelona and Messi.

They played Wales in the semi-final, before overcoming a France side cramped by their own fears in the final.

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