Xavi has responded to Cristiano Ronaldo's claims that there is "no one better" in world football than the Real Madrid superstar.
Ronaldo has enjoyed a stellar 2017 after he lifted the 2016/17 La Liga and Champions League titles, scooped up the 2017 Club World Cup and was crowned the winner of the prestigious Ballon d'Or award for the fifth time.
Xavi, though, told Spanish news publication AS that the 32-year-old had ideas above his station and, perhaps with a huge helping of bias, stated that his ex-Barcelona teammate and Argentina captain Lionel Messi was a better player than the Portuguese ace.
Xavi commented: "Messi does more things compared to Cristiano. Messi is the best. If Cristiano considers himself the best player in history, that's fine, but those of us who see him train, there is no comparison. Messi is the best in history and we don't see it any other way."
The veteran midfielder's answer comes in the wake of an interview that Ronaldo gave to France Football where the striker brazenly stated that he considered himself to be the best footballer on the planet at the present time.
He had said: “I don’t see anyone better than me. No player does things that I cannot do myself, but I see things others can’t do.
Cristiano Ronaldo to @francefootball: “I don’t see anyone better than me. No player does things that I cannot do myself, but I see things others can’t do. There’s no more complete player than me. I’m the best player in history — in the good and the bad moments” pic.twitter.com/z8ZOpSpx7k— Oliver Kay (@OliverKayTimes) December 8, 2017
“There’s no more complete player than me. I’m the best player in history — in the good and the bad moments.”
This year's haul of trophies and personal accolades give weight to Ronaldo's argument, but there are those fans who would still choose the mercurial talents of Messi over the physical specimen that is the former Sporting and Manchester United star.
If nothing else Ronaldo's and Xavi's quips add further fuel to the fire that is the ongoing discussion about which player is better than the other and, truth by told, it'll never be a rivalry that goes quietly into the night.