John Obi Mikel, a former midfielder for the Super Eagles of Nigeria, praised Lionel Messi as a superstar from another planet and selected him as the best player he had ever faced versus Cristiano Ronaldo.
From 2006 until 2017, Obi-Mikel played as a central defensive midfielder for Chelsea throughout the majority of his professional career.
Throughout all competitions, he made 372 appearances and won the Blues 11 major titles.
During his tenure at Stamford Bridge, the 36-year-old battled against a number of elite players, including Lionel Messi’s Barcelona and Cristiano Ronaldo’s Manchester United.
Obi Mikel recently made an appearance on Rio Ferdinand’s FIVE podcast and talked about a variety of issues including how African players take on a burden to help their families when successful.
Mikel was questioned about playing against Messi on the podcast and his response has gone viral.
Before saying that there was no comparison between the Argentine ace and Cristiano Ronaldo, the former Nigerian international waxed poetic over the eight time Ballon d’Or winner.
Mikel on Messi vs Ronaldo
He said, “The way he [Messi] touches the ball, the way he passes.
“I know the comparison is there but because I’ve played against both and Messi was very very close to me.
“When you play against them, for me, I’m not going to say miles because of what Cristiano has done as well.
“But for me, I really don’t see the comparison in some way because I just think Messi’s from a different planet. I just think he’s that good. He’s that good.”
“The game plan was just to kick him, get him off the ball, because we can’t get the ball off him.
“You can’t get close enough. You think he’s there, he’s gone.”
Messi vs Ronaldo
It is undeniable that Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are the two best football players of our generation.
In 1045 games for club and country in all competitions, Lionel Messi has 821 goals and 361 assists.
The eight-time Ballon d’Or winner has the most trophies in football history with 44 wins, averaging 73 minutes per goal contribution.
With 1194 total appearances for club and Portugal Cristiano Ronaldo, on the other hand, has 864 goals and 246 assists.
With 35 titles in an impressive career, the five-time Ballon d’Or winner averages 88 minutes per goal contribution.