Pele slams Lionel Messi, calls him a ‘one-skill’ player

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According to the football legend, 5-time Ballon d'Or victor Lionel Messi is less "complete" than himself or Diego Maradona, citing Messi's generally one-sided kicks and no headers.

Former Brazil forward Pele has stated that Diego Maradona was a "much better player" than Lionel Messi - adding that Barcelona No. 10 "only shoots with one leg, only has one skill and doesn't head the ball well". We talked and I told him: 'In soccer, God gave you a gift, but what you did is what made it hard.

"How can you compare?" he told Folha de Sao Paulo.

Proceeding to describe his fellow countryman Neymar as being better than his club-mate and World Cup victor Kylian Mbappe, Pele also made note of his admiration Franz Beckenbauer and Johann Cruyff.


The legendary three-time World Cup victor claimed he was the better player and a more complete sportsman; however, at the same time singling out Diego Maradona, as also "a much better player", than the Argentinian ace.

Pele won the Ballon d'Or seven times while he was also named FIFA's Player of the Century.

Pele, meanwhile, said no one should try to compare him with Messi, suggesting their skillset was completely different.

Pele tallied over 1,000 career goals and won three World Cups, but it doesn't mean that Messi shouldn't be compared to him.


Yet you'll have a hard time convincing the purists that Messi really is worse than Luka Modric, Cristiano Ronaldo, Antoine Griezmann and Kylian Mbappe.

Pele also said fellow Brazilian Neymar is a "better player" than France's World Cup victor, Kylian Mbappe.

"It is hard to defend Neymar for all the things he does outside of football", Pele said.

In the same interview, Pele also said Argentinian World Cup victor Maradona was "much better" than his compatriot Messi - although the Brazilian has been on record as previously saying that even Maradona could not compare in the pantheon of all-time greats, due to the same apparent flaws as Messi.


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