Thursday, 12 April 2012
Messi, better than me? No chance, he's not even as good as Neymar, says Pele
Pele claims Neymar is a superior talent to Lionel Messi
Legend Pele has dismissed claims that Lionel Messi has usurped him as the greatest player of all time, and disputed that he is even the best of those currently playing.
The Brazilian World Cup winner, who is widely regarded as the finest footballer to have ever lived, believes instead his fellow countryman Neymar is superior to the current world player of the year.
Pele has throughout his career been forced to defend his own position in the face of those who back Diego Maradona in the battle for supremacy, and now is fighting the corner of the latest 'Next Pele' to come out of Brazil.
Speaking at an event celebrating the centennial of Neymar's club Santos, Pele said: 'There's always this Maradona comparison, saying that he's better than Pele. Now some are saying that Messi is better than Pele.
'Well, he has to be better than Neymar first, which he isn't yet. He has more experience.'
Neymar, who has already scored 100 goals for his club despite being just 20-years-old, is widely expected to move to Barcelona or Real Madrid before the 2014 World Cup in his homeland.
World Cup winner Ossie Ardiles says Lionel Messi is better than his former teammate Diego Maradona even though the Barcelona star has yet to find success with Argentina's national team.
Messi is yet to win anything with Argentina
'I played with Maradona for seven years and he was magnificent,' Ardiles said at a press conference on Wednesday. 'I thought I would never see another player like that but I have to say Messi is better.'
But Ardiles said he was confident Messi can help Argentina win a World Cup before his career is over.
'Messi hasn't had the results with the national team yet but I am sure that will come,' Ardiles said. 'There is a natural evolution and players today are just getting better. Messi is by far the best.'