Eden Hazard claims he was better than Cristiano Ronaldo in ‘pure football’ terms – but admits Lionel Messi is ‘the greatest in history’

Eden Hazard has sensationally claimed that he was better than Cristiano Ronaldo, before admitting that Lionel Messi is “the greatest in history”.

GFX Info Lionel Messi Eden Hazard 2023

The Belgian made a big-money move from Chelsea to Real Madrid in June 2019 and was handed over the iconic No.7 shirt by president Florentino Perez. Hazard was viewed as the successor of Ronaldo, the greatest goalscorer in the club’s history. However, he failed to realise his potential and fizzled out after just seven goals and 12 assists during his injury-ravaged spell in the Spanish capital.

During an interview with L’Equipe, Hazard weighed on the debate between Messi and Ronaldo and said: “Individually, Messi is perhaps the only one. I loved watching the Barcelona player, less so at the end, but he’s the greatest in history. It’s impossible to take the ball away from him. Cristiano is a bigger player than me but, in terms of pure football, I honestly don’t think so. Neymar, maybe. After that, he’s no better than me, but at Real, you’ve got the best, also in terms of their careers: Benzema, Modric, they were the best, Kroos, Kev’ (De Bruyne), they all exude football.”

While both Messi and Ronaldo are going strong with Inter Miami and Al-Nassr respectively, Hazard announced his retirement from football at the age of 32 in October 2023. The winger took little care of himself during his stint in Madrid and was often accused of being overweight. Moreover, a recurring ankle injury troubled him which saw his skills wane on the pitch.

Ronaldo Messi

Ronaldo is Real Madrid’s leading goal-scorer in the club’s history with 450 strikes in 438 matches. Overall, Ronaldo won 15 trophies during his stint in Spain, which included four Champions League titles and two La Ligas.

Ronaldo’s Al-Nassr handed a 6-0 thrashing to Inter Miami in a recent friendly as Tata Martino’s side looked sluggish against a team that exposed their defensive vulnerabilities on several occasions. However, Ronaldo’s injury prevented him from participating whereas, Messi had a brief outing. But the legends may get their ‘Last Dance’ in the future with Julian Gressel saying Inter Miami would “love a rematch” with Al-Nassr.

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