Cristiano Ronaldo has been owning Lionel Messi
Now that they have embarked on a new journey in club football, Cristiano Ronaldo appears to have been outshining his longtime rival Lionel Messi.
For more than a decade now, Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi have dominated the competition with both finishing each season with flying colors.
However, the narrative of the Messi vs. Ronaldo rivalry seems to have changed this season. What used to be a back and forth battle of impressive performances game after game has now turned a bit one-sided with the Portuguese evidently thumping his Argentine peer.
As it stands, Ronaldo has been enjoying his sterling return to Manchester United, bagging a total of four goals in his first three matches for the Red Devils.
After his sensational brace in his second debut at Old Trafford, Ronaldo followed it up with an opening goal in the UEFA Champions League match against Swiss side Young Boys in Bern.
The 36-year-old continued where he left off and notched the equalizer against West Ham United in Manchester United’s thrilling 2-1 English Premier League win.
Delighted with Ronaldo’s fine form, Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer credited his former teammate’s ability to defy the laws of time.
For Solskjaer, Ronaldo’s hot streak is just the start of “more goals” to come.
“It’s about his longevity and sustainability and his professionalism and his quality,” Solskjaer told Manchester United’s official website of Ronaldo.
“He scored again and I’m sure he’ll score more goals for us,” he added.
Messi, on the other hand, is still unable to make a statement in his move to Paris Saint-Germain.
The six-time Ballon d’Or winner has yet to score a single goal to his name ever since his shocking transfer from Barcelona last month.
Prior to his PSG home debut, the French club’s manager Mauricio Pochettino reassured the fans and stated that there is nothing to worry about Messi.
“He is happy to be able to make his debut at the Parc des Princes in front of his fans tomorrow, he is calm and composed,” Pochettino told reporters in press conference ahead of PSG’s win over Lyon.
“But so is the whole team,” he added. “Everyone is thinking about putting in the best performance possible, our goal is to win this game.”
However, what happened at Parc des Princes that day speaks highly of what Messi truly feel about his new team.
Ten minutes after Neymar’s 66th minute penalty goal, Pochettino decided to take Messi out of the game, a strange substitution that sparked controversy due to the former Barcelona star’s reaction afterwards.
It can be recalled that as Messi walked off the pitch, Pochettino reached out to him for a handshake. To everybody’s surprise, the 34-year-old refused to extend his arm and gave his manager a disappointed look instead.
Lifting the lid on the subject, Pochettino insisted that he came up with the decision to take Messi out to avoid further injury.
“We made the decision to take [Lionel] Messi off because of a possible future injury,” Pochettino said in a post-game interview. “We have important matches coming up and we have to protect him.”