Barcelona defender Gerard Pique has declared Real Madrid rival Cristiano Ronaldo the best of the human race, but still falls short of his teammate “from another planet” Lionel Messi.
Messi and Ronaldo enjoy a celebrated rivalry having won the last eight ballon d’Or trophies, with the football world sharply split on who’s the greater player.
After what has been a slightly under-par season, Ronaldo bounced back to reckoning at the weekend hit the winner in El Clasico, after Karim Benzema cancelled out Pique’s opener.
Pique, one of the standout players in a subdued Barca side, has played with both men having won the Premier League and Champions League double in 2007-08 when Ronaldo was United’s star.
The Spain World Cup winner, who has won five Liga titles, three Copa del Rey crowns and a trio of Champions League medals since returning to Camp Nou, gave his thoughts on both megastars.
“I think that they are both amazing,” Pique told BT Sport. “We are talking about two of the best players, not just in the world but the history of this sport.
“I always said that Messi has some talent that no one has. I mean, he has the ball and his speed controlling the ball. The ball doesn’t go two metres far from his foot, it’s always there. It’s impossible to catch him, this talent I didn’t see from anyone.
“Cristiano Ronaldo is such a different player, they are very different. He is tall, strong, he’s really complete. He can do anything. He can do goals with the head, free-kicks, penalties, take one on one.
“But for me it’s like Messi is not human but Cristiano is the best of the humans.”