Former Nigerian super Eagles captain and football legend Jay Jay Okocha has added his voice to the unending debate on who the better player is between Real Madrid and Portuguese forward Cristiano Ronaldo and Barcelona’s Argentine star Lionel Messi.
“I have to be diplomatic here, especially as I have a lot of Portuguese friends, but I intend to lean towards Messi.
The former PSG, Fenerbahce and Bolton midfielder said while speaking to FIFA’s official website.
“He is a more natural talent. Ronaldo is a fantastic player, one of the best I’ve ever seen, but he’s been a bit unfortunate to be of the same generation as Messi. Consequently, they have to share the limelight.” Okocha added.
Many will not be surprised by the AFCON and Olympic gold winning legend’s choice in Messi, as the Argentine is more of a skillful star between the two football greats, a style that Jay Jay is famous for.
However, Okocha was quick to attribute similarities with Brazilian super star Neymar, who just left Barcelona for his former side PSG, in a record shattering €222m last week.
“I’d say the player whose style most resembles mine would be Neymar. That’s because I played with a sense of joy and you can see that he feels the same and really enjoys his own play. He doesn’t play for himself or just to entertain the fans he plays for his team. He uses his quality and skill for the good of the team.” Okocha concluded.
Jay Jay okocha made 75 appearances for Nigeria, scoring 14 goals. He played in three world cups [1994, 1998, 2002].
He won the AFCON trophy in 1994.
Okocha also won Olympic gold with the Dream Team in Atlanta 1996.
Okocha was however unfortunate not to have won the African footballer of the year award, losing famously to Hadji of Morocco and Samuel Eto’o of Cameroon