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Cristiano Ronaldo

Ronaldo ‘still number one’ over Messi as Foster says critics of former Man Utd team-mate are ‘completely mad’

5:21 am AEST 2/5/22
Cristiano Ronaldo Manchester United Norwich Premier League 2021-22
The ex-Red Devils goalkeeper considers a Portuguese superstar to be “an absolute specimen” and expects him to play on for some time yet

Cristiano Ronaldo is “still number one” in his eternal battle with Lionel Messi, claims Ben Foster, with a former Manchester United team-mate of the Portuguese legend considering any critics of an all-time great to be “completely mad”.

Questions have been asked of whether a five-time Ballon d’Or winner is starting to see his powers wane at 37 years of age, with his presence – along with 23 goals – unable to inspire an inconsistent Red Devils side to a top-four finish or major silverware in 2021-22.

There have been suggestions that he could move on in the summer, but Foster sees no sign of a legendary figure slowing down and believes a standing as the greatest ever will be enhanced further as he plays on for “another year or two at least”.

Is Cristiano Ronaldo the GOAT?

Foster, who is currently on the books at Watford, once played alongside Ronaldo at Old Trafford and believes his record-setting career places him slightly ahead of Argentine icon Messi in the GOAT stakes, telling The Mirror: “The level is high as you like. For a 37-year-old, he is an absolute specimen. He is still rapid. He is just one of those who is a natural goalscorer.

“For me, in that eternal Messi v Ronaldo debate, he is still number one for me.

“I think even this season people are completely mad that they think he is finished. He's not finished. Look how many goals he has scored, that's incredible.

“For anybody, that is a fantastic season, but because it is Ronaldo, people expect 30, 40, 50 goals. No - he is playing in a team that is not firing on all cylinders so you are not going to score that many goals anyway, but for people to say that he is finished, no chance mate.

“He is good to go still for another year or two at least.”

Where will Cristiano Ronaldo be playing in 2022-23?

Ronaldo signed a two-year contract with United when making an emotional return to English football in the summer of 2021.

There are still 12 months left to run on that agreement, but there has been talk of a veteran frontman taking his considerable skill set elsewhere for 2022-23.

A retracing of steps to Real Madrid has been speculated on for a man that previously broke countless records in the Spanish capital, while there has been plenty of discussion regarding a fresh start in MLS.

Ronaldo has offered no indication that he is readying himself for a new challenge, but a lack of Champions League football with the Red Devils may see his head turned.

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