- 39 year old Swedish striker says Brazilian legend Ronaldo is the best player in the history of Football
- Zlatan Ibrahimovic says “everyone” wanted to play like the World Cup winner at the height of his career
The 39 year old AC Milan star player Zlatan Ibrahimovic has named the Brazilian legend Ronaldo as “the best player in history”.
The Swedish footballer, Ibrahimovic, expressed his admiration for the World Cup winner ahead of Milan’s Europa League clash with Red Star Belgrade on Friday, while putting him ahead of all of the modern-day greats including the great Argentine Lionel Messi and Portuguese Cristiano Ronaldo in the all-time list of top players.
The 39-year-old thinks Ronaldo Nazario, who led Brazil to the World Cup glory back in 2002 FIFA World Cup, transcended the game with his unique talents and still stands out as the unrivalled master of the footballing craft to this day.
Talking to Discovery Plus, Zlatan said, “I don’t need to describe Ronaldo, ‘The Phenomenon’”.
“I always say you have the players that play the game, and the players that are the game. For me, Ronaldo is the game.
“When you watch him play, everyone wanted to play like him and become like him. The way he was moving, the way he did his stepovers, the way he did ‘the snake’.
“The way he was moving, for me he’s the greatest player through history, no doubt”, he said.
Ronaldo Nazario, 44, began his professional Football career in his homeland with Cruzeiro in the year 1993, and then went on to play for PSV, Barcelona, Inter Milan, Real Madrid, AC Milan and Corinthians.
In 492 matches the Brazilian forward scored 296 goals and also won 3 FIFA World Player of the Year awards along with two Ballons d’Or – the first of which saw him enter the record books as the youngest ever winner of the prize at the age of 21.
During his spell at Inter and Barcelona, Ronaldo was almost unstoppable and even helped his home country Brazil reach the FIFA World Cup 1992 finals before scoring 8 goals in FIFA World Cup 2002 help fire the Selecao to their fifth title.
Ronaldo later joined another Snapnish giant Real Madrid at the height of the club’s ‘Galactico’ era, and ended up staying at the Santiago Bernabeu for five years – the longest spell at one club in his entire career – securing one La Liga crown along the way.
Though Zlatan does not possess as many individual accolades to his name as Ronaldo, what he does has are more major silverware at club level than the former Madrid star managed in his career.
Ronaldo won 13 trophies over the course of his career which spanned over 18 ears, while Ibrahimovic has already won 31, including league titles in France, Holland, Italy, and Spain.
The Swedish record of finding the back of the net also holds up against that of his footballing idol’s, with more than 500 goals recorded from close to 800 appearances across all competitions during his 21-year spell in the game.