Ronaldo Silenced Over Ligue 1 Comment, Accused of Targeting Messi's Legacy

Football icons chart new courses in twilight years

by Zain ul Abedin
Ronaldo Silenced Over Ligue 1 Comment, Accused of Targeting Messi's Legacy
© Yasser Bakhsh/Getty Images

In a recent, candid assessment of global football leagues, Cristiano Ronaldo, the celebrated five-time Ballon d'Or recipient, ignited a spirited debate by positioning the Saudi Pro League above France's Ligue 1 in terms of competitive edge.

Speaking from his experience after a year in the Middle East, Ronaldo confidently stated, "The Saudi Pro League is more competitive than Ligue 1, I can say that after one year spent there. We are better than the French league already now." This bold comparison, especially given Ligue 1's recent association with Lionel Messi, Ronaldo's perennial rival, has stirred considerable controversy.

Frank Leboeuf, a revered figure in French football and a 1998 World Cup victor, did not mince words in his rebuttal to Ronaldo's claims. In a statement to BetVictor, Leboeuf expressed his irritation, suggesting that Ronaldo's commentary was not only unfounded but also a veiled swipe at Messi's tenure in Ligue 1.

"It annoys me when I hear Cristiano Ronaldo saying that the Saudi Pro League is better than Ligue 1," Leboeuf remarked, urging Ronaldo to focus on his achievements rather than diminish the stature of other leagues.

Legends' Lasting Legacy

Ronaldo's move to Al-Nassr, marked by a contract described as the most lucrative in football's history, came after he departed from Manchester United.

This transition, according to Leboeuf, echoes a broader trend of football legends like Messi, now with Inter Miami, choosing financial rewards over competing at the zenith of European football. Despite this, Leboeuf acknowledges the indelible mark both icons have left on the sport, "Thank you Ronaldo, thank you Messi, enjoy your retirement!" As Ronaldo gears up to lead Portugal into Euro 2024, boasting an impressive tally of 34 goals in the 2023-24 campaign, and Messi continues to dazzle in MLS, their legacy remains unassailable.

Their journey, now taking them through less heralded leagues, still captures the imagination of fans worldwide, reflecting on a rivalry that has not only defined their careers but also elevated football to unprecedented heights.