Ronaldo Gets Thumbs Down From Both Pele & Maradona as Legends Fuel Football’s Biggest Debate

?Cristiano Ronaldo is having one of the worst league seasons of his career.

The Portuguese star, who won his fifth Ballon d’Or last year, as well as the Best FIFA Men’s Player Award, has only scored six goals this season in La Liga.

Real Madrid are also 19 points adrift of La Liga leaders Barcelona, leaving the 32-year-old very unlikely to defend last year’s league title. And as if matters couldn’t get any worse, he suffered a horrible gash above his left eye during ?Sunday’s 7-1 win over Deportivo.

Real Madrid v Deportivo La Coruna - La Liga

Perhaps glowing reviews from two of the best players to ever grace a football pitch would have been enough to soothe the stricken star, yet he has been let down there as well, with both Brazil legend Pele and former Argentina superstar Diego Maradona failing to recognise him as the best.

“Everybody has the right to say what they want and I don’t think Cristiano Ronaldo is the best player in history,” Maradona said in an interview with Telesur, via ?Marca. “Not at all.


“But I do respect the career he is having. He has a long way to go from this point to the point where we talk about him as the best ever.”

Pele, meanwhile, revealed that he thinks Lionel Messi is better, despite Ronaldo’s goal-scoring achievements.

“I would still choose Messi,” Pele said on TV Globoover the weekend. “Scoring goals is important, without doubt, but if there isn’t anybody there to set it up, the ball won’t go into the net. In my team, I’d prefer Messi.”

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Those statements won’t go down well with Ronaldo, but he’s thrived off proving people wrong all of his career and this could be just the sort of motivation he needs to kick into gear this term.



01 2018
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Real Madrid Face Paris Saint-Germain Opposition in January Thibaut Courtois Pursuit

?Real Madrid face a battle for the signature of Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois, with Ligue 1 Paris Saint-Germain reportedly leading the way in the pursuit of the Belgian, according to reports. 

Lost Blancos’ struggles so far this season have been well-documented, with the Spanish capital side currently 19 points behind league leaders Barcelona.

Despite their underperforming attacking line-up for the most part of this campaign, Zinedine Zidane’s men have also found troubles keeping clean sheets, and according to ?Sky Sports’ La Liga expert Guillem Balague, Florentino Perez is keen to address that issue. 

The report claims that Real Madrid are preparing to bring in a replacement for Keylor Navas, and see Chelsea’s Courtois as the perfect man, after ?Bilbao’s Kepa Arrizabalaga penned a new deal in the Basque country.

However, it is thought that Los Blancos may well be faced with not only the battle to coax the 25-year-old away from Stamford Bridge, but will also have to deal with the expected challenge of Paris Saint-Germain, who are said to be showing interest. 

Balague states that in fact PSG lead in the way in the chase for the Belgium international shot stopper, insisting that the big-money spends have laid more of the foundations needed to make the move happen. 

It had been expected that the reigning La Liga champions and Champions League holders would snap up Athletic Bilbao custodian Kepa on a free transfer at the end of this season. However the 23-year-old has since put pen to paper on a new lucrative deal at the San Mames Stadium ruling that option out. 

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This has left Real to turn to Courtois, who is believed to want to secure his future this month, but Zidane and his board have some catching up to do if they are to beat Paris to their man. 



01 2018
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Karim Benzema’s Agent Blasts ‘Unfair’ Whistles From Real Madrid Fans Following Deportivo Win

?Karim Benzema’s agent has bemoaned the “unfair” treatment of the Real Madrid forward after ?Sunday’s 7-1 victory over Deportivo La Coruna.

The Frenchman was introduced as a second-half substitute to whistles from sections of the Bernabeu, having been widely criticised for his form this season.

And his agent, Karim Djaziri, has claimed that such a reception was not entirely justified, given Benzema’s dedication to the club since his arrival from Lyon in 2009.

“These are difficult times, but since he was young he showed that he is very strong mentally, as well as throughout his time in Madrid,” he said in an interview with ?Marca. “He has been at his dream club for nine years.

“It’s unfair that he was whistled when Real Madrid were winning and he was returning from a month-long injury. Karim has always shown exemplary commitment to the club and has put the team before himself, so he doesn’t deserve this treatment.

“He doesn’t understand it and it’s a lack of respect for a player who is the club’s seventh highest scorer of all-time.

“He has participated in some of the brightest eras the biggest club in the world has enjoyed. You can whistle anyone, but never a player who hasn’t even been on the pitch, it’s incomprehensible.”

Despite Djaziri’s assertion that Benzema has been left disappointed by the lack of support, he has insisted that his client is not seeking an imminent exit.

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“Benzema feels that the real fans of the club are with him, and he wants to show that he deserves everyone’s support,” he added.

“He feels the support of many Real Madrid fans, the club and his teammates. He has always felt the love of Madrid but this latest incident is simply difficult to understand.”



01 2018
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Kepa Ready to Pen New Deal With Athletic Bilbao After Growing Tired of Waiting for Real Madrid

?Athletic Bilbao goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga is ready to bring an end to all the talk of a Real Madrid move and sign a new deal with his current club, according to Spanish outlet ?Marca.

The stopper is said to have grown impatient over Real’s lingering and will accept Athletic’s latest offer to effectively put a stop to all of the speculation surrounding his future.

Athletic Club v Real Madrid - La Liga

The club has been at him to sign a new deal for the last 16 months, and Marca report that he could finally put pen to paper this week, on what could be a five or six-year contract that will see him become one of the club’s three highest earners.

The La Liga side recently tied Inaki s down with a new deal and a raise in wages. And Kepa’s extension is likely to see him earn a figure close to that of the attacker’s new earnings.

Madrid were believed to have ?made Kepa their sole target for the January window, yet French boss Zinedine Zidane has reiterated his intention to keep the club’s doors closed this month.

“We will never have a problem between the club and I,” he said during a press conference on Saturday. “We do things together.

“If you ask me, there is no difference of opinion between the club and this coach. We aren’t going to sign in the winter.”

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Zidane also insisted that he isn’t under any pressure, despite Madrid’s poor form this season.

He said: “It doesn’t worry me and we have the solution, so we must show that we are the same as ever and we have the chance to get back to doing it.”



01 2018
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Real Madrid 7-1 Deportivo de La Coruña: Real Ease Pressure on Zinedine Zidane With Emphatic Display

Real Madrid thrashed Deportivo de La Coruña 7-1 at the Bernabeu to claim a vital three points and ease the pressure on under-fire boss Zinedine Zidane. 

Madrid headed into the game having failed to win any of their last three league games, and it was Deportivo who took a shock lead in the 23rd minute through a Lopez tap in. Real deservedly equalised in the 23rd minute however, thanks to Nacho’s curling effort. Gareth Bale then grabbed two goals, his first a sumptuous left-footed curler (42) and his second a header (58). 

Modric finished off a flowing move with a fine strike in the 68th minute, and Ronaldo scored two (78, 84) to lift his goals tally to six for the season, before Nacho scored his second and Madrid’s seventh minutes from time. 

Following their fourth defeat in five games, Deportivo remain in 18th place two points off safety. Madrid climb up to 4th in the table, but still remain a massive 16 points behind leaders Barcelona. 

Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane opted to make one change from the side which lost 1-0 to Villarreal last weekend, with 20-year-old Borja Mayoral coming in for Isco. Karim Benzema made a return to the Real bench having recovered from a hamstring injury, while Sergio Ramos remained out with a calf problem. 

Deportivo boss Cristobal Parralo made two injury-enforced changes from the side who were defeated 2-1 by Valencia last weekend: Raul Albentosa and Sidnei were replaced by Aldo One and Fabian Schar in the centre of the Branquiazuis’ defence. 

Madrid – who were closer to 18th place Deportivo than league leaders Barcelona heading into the game – carved out their first opportunity of the match in the 4th minute. Gareth Bale did well on the right to whip in a dangerous cross which was met by Ronaldo at the far post, but the Portuguese international was unable to direct his header on goal and his effort flew over the bar from eight yards out. 

Ruben Martinez was forced into his first save just a minute later. Modric cut in a low cross which found Mayoral on the edge of the Depor box, the Spaniard hit a powerful shot but it was too close to Martinez and the keeper managed to make a comfortable save to his right.

Real Madrid v Deportivo La Coruna - La Liga

After the fast-paced start from Los Blancos, Deportivo had started to grow into the game and it was the 18th-placed side who were to take a shock lead in the 23rd minute of the game. 

Andonde flicked a header on to Perez on the left, the on-loan Arsenal forward drove to the byline and cut the ball back across goal, leaving Adrian with a simple finish at the back post. 

Real were close to equalising just two minutes later. Marcelo’s cross from the left found a leaping Ronaldo at the far post, the 32-year-old powered his header towards goal, but Ruben managed to palm it away.

Los Blancos came even closer to scoring in the 30th minute. Marcelo was again involved, this time the Brazilian’s fierce shot nearly squirmed past Ruben, but the ball bounced off the post and into the hands of the keeper.


Los Blancos did manage to grab their deserved equaliser in the 32nd minute. After a quick corner on the right, Nacho collected a one-two with the heavily involved Marcelo and curled his shot past Ruben and into the far corner. 

Three minutes before half-time and Zidane’s side took the lead. Marcelo got free down the left and his subsequent looping cross found Bale around 10 yards out on the right. The Welshman nudged the ball to past Andone and curled a sumptuous left-footed effort past the helpless Ruben and into the top corner.

Real Madrid v Deportivo La Coruna - La Liga

Madrid started off the second-half on the front foot and nearly made it three in the 52nd minute. Kroos played in Marcelo on the edge of the box, the Brazilian powered a low drive across goal which just missed the sliding Mayoral. 

Los Blancos’ intense pressure told eventually, and the 5th-placed La Liga side scored their third goal in the 58th minute. Kroos whipped in a corner from the left, and Bale leapt highest to nod in his second of the game from six yards out. 

Madrid’s fourth goal came in the 68th minute. Zidane’s side countered through Ronaldo, who played in Modric on the edge of Deportivo’s box, the Croatian international curled his effort past Ruben and into the bottom corner.

Real Madrid v Deportivo La Coruna - La Liga

10 minutes later and it was 5-1, with Ronaldo on hand to finish at the back post following Casemiro’s cross from the right. The Portugal international then scored his sixth La Liga goal of the season in the 84th minute. The 32-year-old bravely met Vasquez’s cross from the right and looped his header past Ruben from six yards out.  

Madrid weren’t finished there and, having failed to score in their last two games at home, Zidane’s side made it 7-1 in the 88th minute. A corner from the right deflected off a number of bodies before finding Nacho ten yards out, who turned sharply and finished emphatically to claim his second goal of the game.



01 2018
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