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Real Cartagena V La Equidad Bogota, Apr 4
Ordaye (Liverpool) 6 years ago
To submit the names of Pele, Cruyff and Maradona as the greatest players of all time. In this day and age, we have to work very hard in order to snatch a full 90 minutes worth of performance from that Holy Trinity. Youtube exists and is a precious commodity for revisiting the old stuff but it is the same tool which prompted Newcastle to buy Nacho Gonzalez. In other words, it can make a player seem as good as it wants to. Without the benefit of objective, critical analysis on a day to day, week to week basis, we can neither dismiss the legacy of the greats, nor can we take it at absolute face value.

In the last decade and a half, with an over-abundance of televisual exposure and the advent of online streaming, we can generally see what we want when we want and plenty of it too. Zinedine Zidane, at Bordeaux, Juventus and Real Madrid led football into the information age and Ronaldinho took up the reins in the middle part of the last decade. Cristiano Ronaldo is still dazzling but rarely has the world been in the presence of such consistent greatness as Lionel Messi. On Tuesday night, we were treated to a display of absolute, undiluted genius.

This was not simply 'another' good showing from the Argentine. We have seen plenty of those already; three hat-tricks in 2010 alone before Leo put Arsenal to the sword with ferocious ruthlessness. Every Barcelona game in La Liga and the Champions League is broadcast to an audience of millions and, even at the tender age of 22, Messi's reputation as one of the best players in the world precedes him. Still, he found the audacity to astound

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