France’s national team coach, Didier Deschamps, recently sparked a debate by expressing reservations about declaring Lionel Messi as the definitive Greatest Of All Time (GOAT) in football. Deschamps, in a candid remark, suggested that it’s challenging to place the Inter Miami sensation above the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Kylian Mbappe.
In the realm of international football, Messi’s brilliance was on full display during the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. The Argentine maestro was instrumental in his team’s triumph, scoring key goals in the final against France. This performance was a significant factor in Messi clinching his eighth Ballon d’Or, a feat unrivaled in the football world. While Messi’s extraordinary Ballon d’Or tally sets him apart, with Ronaldo trailing with five awards, Deschamps isn’t entirely swayed in Messi’s favor.
During a conversation with ESPN Deportes at the Ballon d’Or ceremony, Deschamps commented, “While Argentinians may believe Messi is the best ever, it’s hard to definitively say he ranks above Ronaldo or the younger Mbappe.”
This statement comes despite Messi’s remarkable recent achievements. In a fiercely contested race for the Ballon d’Or, Messi outshined both Erling Haaland, who had an impressive 52-goal season leading Manchester City to a treble, and his PSG teammate Mbappe, who scored 55 goals for club and country. Notably, Messi played a crucial role in setting up many of Mbappe’s goals during their time together at PSG.
Deschamps’ views add a new dimension to the ongoing debate about who truly deserves the title of football’s GOAT, acknowledging the achievements of both veteran icons and emerging stars in the sport.
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