Pele insists he is the king, not Lionel Messi


Brazilian great Pele

BRAZILIAN great Pele insists current Ballon d’Or holder Lionel Messi is only “the prince”, while he remains “the king”.

Pele was widely known for his goal-scoring exploits in his playing days, much the same as Barcelona’s current talisman is world-renowned for his impressive scoring record.

Yet Pele, now 75, feels he was still the superior footballer.

“If I am the king, then Messi has been the prince over the past 15 years,” Pele told La Vanguardia.

“I cannot call him the king, because there is only one king.”

Pele mentioned other Argentine stars who have etched their names in history, and believes players of the past are not appreciated as much due to lack of coverage of their performances.

Lionel Messi..the little magician

Lionel Messi..the little magician


“I believe that Alfredo Di Stefano was the most complete of the Argentine stars, he was more complete than [Diego] Maradona and Messi,” he continued.

“I am glad that I played in my era, even if it’s true everything is more simple now.

“Players like Di Stefano are I are not as well-known because there are far fewer recordings of our performances.”

Although official statistics vary, Pele is believed to have scored 650 goals in 694 club games, while 28-year-old Messi has 453 goals in 530 matches for Barcelona.

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