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One Last Battle Between the Two GOATs.

The football World for the last fifteen years predominantly revolved around two players - Lionel Messi of Argentina and Cristiano Ronaldo of Portugal. 'Who is better, Messi or Ronaldo?' is one of the few questions that can start a debate war that could go on and on. Football World could see the face-off between these two fierce competitors this month, one last time. 


Mid-January, Lionel Messi's Paris Saint Germain will travel to Saudi Arabia for a friendly match with the combined eleven of Al- Nassr, and Al-Hilal. This friendly match is named the Riyad season cup. Recently, to all football fans' amusement, Cristiano Ronaldo signed a whopping £200 million per year contract with the Saudi-based club Al Nassr, making him the highest-paid footballer on the planet. His contract with Manchester United was terminated in November last year as the player was unhappy with the United gaffer Eric Ten Hag and openly criticized the club in an interview with Piers Morgan.


Cristiano Ronaldo arrived at the world cup without a club, and his performance on the biggest stage was below par. He could only score one penalty goal in his five appearances for the Portuguese national team. He didn't make it to the starting eleven against Switzerland in the pre-quarter and Morocco in the Quarterfinals; although he played a considerable 40 minutes in the Quarterfinals, that wasn't enough to stop the Marakesh express from advancing. A teary-eyed Ronaldo walking through the tunnel in what would be his last world cup match was indeed a bitter pill to swallow for football fans. After the World Cup, Ronaldo returned to Real Madrid training ground, and rumors were that he might join his previous den as a free agent. However, his move to the West Asian side came after no major European club wanted him on the team.


On the other hand, Lionel Messi had the year of his life. Despite a sluggish start with PSG last season, he turned things around in 2022. Messi led his country to the Finalissima win at Wembley and the ultimate prize in football, the world cup, at Lusail, Qatar. He completed football in 2022 and became the best player and the second-top scorer of the world cup. He earned five Man of the match awards of the possible seven, which shows he is still the master of his craft despite being on the wrong side of thirty. 


Lionel Messi returned to Paris on January 3rd, where he was honored by PSG for his excellent performance at the world cup. The players and staff gave him a guard of honor, and a memento was also presented to him. He won't feature in this weekend's French Cup match but is expected to play against Angers next week in the Ligue1. 


However, if things go as planned, we could see the two greats of the game locking horns again, probably for the last time. Messi, in a video released by PSG, says that he has been out of action since the World Cup final and needs to get back to 100% fitness levels. In this case, this friendly game would be perfect for him to prepare for the upcoming Ligue1 matches and a Champions League clash with the heavyweights, Bayern Munich. Cristiano Ronaldo could prove that he is still at his razor-sharp best with a mind-blowing performance against PSG with the relatively unfamiliar Al Nassr colors.

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