The Brazilian legend, Ronaldo R9 was a hero for Brazil and Real Madrid prior to Cristiano Ronaldo’s switch to the Bernabeu years later.
Mikael Silvestre told Cristiano Ronaldo he is no match for Brazilian namesake Ronaldo. Apparently, Silvestre played with the two stars.
Silvestre was teammates with the Portuguese superstar at Manchester United years after he had stood alongside the original Ronaldo for Inter Milan.
The Frenchman has lined up on the opposite side of the pitch to Lionel Messi but still feels the Barcelona star pales in comparison to Brazil’s legendary striker.
“He was unstoppable.” Silvestre talked of Ronaldo R9.
“You called him El Fenomeno then. I played against Messi and I played with Cristiano at Manchester United. But he, (R9) is something else in terms of speed.”
Silvestre and Ronaldo shared a dressing room at Inter for a season in 1998-99 immediately after the striker’s starring displays at the World Cup in France.
The former defender then transferred to United at the end of the campaign. Here, he was joined by Cristiano Ronaldo for five seasons from 2003.
Cristiano became a bona fide star at Old Trafford while Silvestre was at the club before following Ronaldo’s footsteps in the white of Real Madrid.
But Silvestre is in two minds about who was the greatest player.
“Everything is top-level with Ronaldo R9. Cristiano, maybe you can guess that he has three or four tricks he would use most of the time. But Ronnie, it was always something different.” Said Silvestre.
“He was inventing things on the spot. So you can’t guide him left or right because he’s going to get out of these situations no matter what.”
“He could score more from any type of position. He was playing on one leg at some points and was still beating defenders all over Europe.”
Ronaldo R9 comments
Despite Silvestre’s view, it is hard to argue with Cristiano’s track record. The five-time Ballon d’Or winner flew to the top of Madrid’s all-time scoring charts, netting 451 times in nine seasons compared with Ronaldo’s 104 over five years.
Ronaldo R9 recently commented on the matter and stating, “For Cristiano, it must be boring to hear that I am the real Ronaldo.”
“People cannot be compared. Cristiano will remain in football history for the goals and for the continuity he has achieved. He will remain one of the best, like Messi.”
However, Jose Mourinho recently weighed in on the debate and was in agreement with Silvestre. The Tottenham manager worked with both players at different stages of his career.
When asked who was the best player, he answered, “Ronaldo El Fenomeno.”