Xavi Says Ronaldinho Belongs Alongside Cristiano Ronaldo In The Tier Below Lionel Messi
Barcelona legend Xavi says that Lionel Messi is the greatest player but Ronaldinho, Cristiano Ronaldo and Ronaldo are in the next tier down, not too far away from the Barca captain.
There is always debate about whether Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo is the best in the world and whether either man can lay claim to the title of best ever.
It's no surprise that Xavi would pick his former teammate as the winner of that particularly contest but he's also placed another teammate alongside the former Real Madrid man as the next tier down.
"Ronaldinho is at the level of the best, perhaps what he lacked was consistency," the Al Sadd manager told Globo Esporte.
"Perhaps he lacked consistency in being at his peak. For me, only Messi is above Ronaldinho because of the consistency of the last few years.
"Messi is the best in history, but Ronaldinho is with the best. The rest follow.
"He [Ronaldinho] is with the best - with Ronaldo, with Cristiano Ronaldo, Messi, that group."
Ronaldinho was probably every neutrals favourite player during his peak at the Camp Nou and twice won the World Footballer of the Year award with the Catalan giants.
However when Pep Guardiola became manager he worried that the Brazilian's party lifestyle might rub off on Messi, as the youngster was just breaking through.
The pair had struck up a good partnership on and off the pitch but Guardiola allowed the former PSG man to move to AC Milan and it worked out for the club.
Life isn't going well for the 40-year-old at the moment though, with the 2002 World Cup winner having to recently celebrate his milestone birthday in prison in Paraguay.
Earlier this year the former footballer entered the South American country with allegedly false papers, leading to him being put behind bars with his brother.
Ronaldinho en cana en Paraguay la pasa mejor que nosotros en cuarentena. pic.twitter.com/yP6n0NNpsE- Un Metro Adelantado (@metroadelantado) March 22, 2020
Xavi could have become manager of his former side earlier this season when they decided to sack Ernesto Valverde, after being dumped out of the Supercopa.
The eight time La Liga winner turned down his former club though and they appointed Quique Setién instead, with the Catalan giants sitting on top of La Liga when the league was suspended.