Erling Haaland now calls Lionel Messi the GOAT despite being inspired by Cristiano Ronaldo

The ongoing debate among fans regarding who is the greatest of all time between Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo continues, as both have been at the summit of the sport and have enjoyed immensely trophy-laden careers. The Argentine has won the FIFA World Cup putting him ahead in the race in the eyes of many fans.

Now, the debate has taken another interesting turn. Manchester City’s ace striker, Erling Haaland, despite being a self-proclaimed admirer of Cristiano Ronaldo, has named Lionel Messi as the best. This declaration comes even though Haaland lost the 2023 Ballon d’Or award to the former Barcelona star.

Erling Haaland declares Lionel Messi as the GOAT

Ahead of Manchester City’s Champions League last-16 return leg tie, as the reigning champions aim to defend their continental crown this season, Erling Haaland addressed the press.

The number nine was questioned about missing out on major individual awards to Lionel Messi, and whether Messi would have to retire for the 23-year-old to finally lay his hands on the FIFA Best award and the Ballon d’Or respectively.

The reporter asked, “For you to actually win those, does he have to retire?” Haaland responded, “I don’t know, good question. Yeah, it’s true he won it and he won the World Cup so I don’t know what to say. 

“He is the best that has ever played, I think, so yeah, I don’t know,” he added in response, labeling the Inter Miami captain as the best to have ever played the game. He agreed with the questioner on the scenario of winning those awards he missed out on.

Erling Haaland once stated Cristiano Ronaldo inspired him

Erling Haaland’s first season in England with Manchester City was marked by a record-breaking campaign on an individual level, as he topped the goal-scoring charts in the Premier League and Champions League. 

He led the Citizens to a historic season, winning the most-awaited European glory and achieving a treble overhaul. The Norwegian international once revealed that his inspiration is none other than Portuguese icon and Manchester United legend Cristiano Ronaldo.

The former Dortmund striker has idolized the five-time Ballon d’Or winner and Real Madrid legend and drawn inspiration crediting him as his main inspiration. He revealed how he used to watch videos of Cristiano, saying, “I remember always watching him on YouTube for his movements in the box.”

Just like other generational talents such as Kylian Mbappé, Rafael Leão, Bukayo Saka, Marcus Rashford, Endrik, Vinicius Jr, and Alejandro Garnacho, many more are on the list.

Ashu Ranjeet

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