Who is the GOAT of soccer as of 2024?

One of the most controversial topics of our time is identifying the GOAT of soccer.

Those who watched soccer in the 1970s may identify the GOAT as Maradona or Pele. As for the current generation, fans will be torn between Messi and Ronaldo.

As a Ronaldo fan, the question that probably lingers on your mind is, Is Messi really the GOAT of soccer? I would say he is the best soccer player in history.

Here are five reasons that make Lionel Messi the greatest footballer of all time.

1. He has scored many goals

Messi is the leading La Liga’s all-time top scorer, with 474 goals in 520 appearances. He is also the league’s top assist provider with 193 assists, surpassing the current Barcelona manager, Xavi, by 76.

He remained a top scorer at Barcelona, scoring 672 goals. In addition to scoring many goals, the Argentinian national collected 35 silverware before leaving the club in 2021 due to its financial crisis.

2. He has inspired many players

Messi deserves the GOAT of soccer because many players have adopted his playing style.

For instance, Christian Pulisic’s agility and quick footwork can be compared to Messi’s. In an interview with ESPN, Christian revealed that he watched Messi a lot as a kid.

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Another player with similar skills to Messi’s is Paulo Dybala. This is apparent when you observe his shooting ability and dribbling skills.

3. He has helped his team win

Before Argentina’s 2022 World Cup victory, its last win was in 1986. This victory is significant because Messi helped his country win the cup after eight more World Cup events.

The Argentinian footballer also helped his country win the 2021 Copa America tournament. After four failed attempts for Argentina in the finals, he secured a 1-0 victory against Brazil.

4. He has impressive soccer skills

One thing that makes Messi fun to watch is his dribbling. He is good at confusing defenders by weaving in and out effortlessly.

You can attribute his impressive dribbling to his short stature (5’7), which provides him with balance and speed.

Messi also excels in his incredible passing accuracy of 83.7%. He normally passes the ball after carefully assessing his teammates’ positions. As a result, he has had many assists, which has helped his team win.

How does Lionel Messi compare to legendary players

While considering Messi the greatest player of all time, it is important to compare him with those who have achieved great success on the football pitch.

So, how does he compare to other football greats?

Who is better between Pele and Messi?

Pele won three FIFA World Cups in 1958, 1962, and 1970.
Pele won three FIFA World Cups in 1958, 1962, and 1970. Image: Instagram/pele

Pele excels in terms of most World Cup victories. He won three FIFA World Cups in 1958, 1962, and 1970. Messi won only the 2022 World Cup.

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However, if we focus on who has scored more goals than the other, that honour belongs to Messi. Messi has scored 806 goals in 1,027 appearances, while Pele scored 767 goals in 832 appearances.

Additionally, Messi deserves the title of the GOAT of soccer because he became the leading goal scorer after scoring a hat-trick against Bolivia in the 2021 World Cup qualifiers.

Who is better between Messi and Ronaldo?

Cristiano Ronaldo is a goal scorer.
Cristiano Ronaldo is a goal scorer. Image: Instagram/cristiano

Ronaldo’s greatest strength is his ability to take on any defender with searing pace.

While facing his defenders, watching his incredible footwork and his ability to whip in crosses is always entertaining. As for Messi, it’s hard for players to tackle him due to his speedy runs from midfield.

Both Messi and Ronaldo are good because they are goal-scorers. However, Messi is better due to his consistency in scoring and amazing footwork. Ronaldo tends to miss scoring opportunities, sometimes, by using fancy styles.

Who is better between Messi and Maradona?

Maradona scored five times in the 1986 World Cup against England.
Maradona scored five times in the 1986 World Cup against England. Image:X/3Retro_Football

In terms of memorability, that honor goes to Maradona. People still talk about his 1986 World Cup victory against Mexico, where he scored five times, including a double against England in the quarter-finals.

Still, Messi remains better in terms of goals scored. Maradona scored 357 goals, more than half of Messi’s. Don’t forget that players like Marek Hamsik overtook his record later on.

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