Messi and Ronaldo prove why they are the GOATs on the international stage

This summer saw a rare phenomenon – Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo playing in different major international tournaments at the same time.

The last time it has happened during their careers was back in 2016. In that year, Ronaldo’s Portugal lifted the European Championship.

Messi’s Argentina, meanwhile, were defeated in the final of Copa America by Chile.

This year, the roles were (almost) reversed. Argentina, powered by Messi’s dominating displays throughout Copa America, beat Brazil in the final.

Portugal were knocked out of Euro 2020 by Belgium at the last 16 stage, despite Ronaldo’s five goals that eventually won him the Golden Boot.

One constant in both tournaments? Messi and Ronaldo both starred for their countries yet again on the big stage.

Messi’s four goals and five assists in seven matches at Copa America were enough to earn him the Top Scorer award. He shared it with Colombia’s Luis Diaz.

Ronaldo, meanwhile, scored five goals at Euro 2020. He won the Golden Boot ahead of Czech Republic’s Patrik Schick by virtue of having one more assist.

Messi and Ronaldo’s club future

Going into their respective summer breaks, Messi and Ronaldo’s futures at club level isn’t clear cut.

Ronaldo is contracted to Juventus until the summer of 2022. And whilst some reports suggest his agent Jorge Mendes has proposed a two-year contract extension, he has been linked with moves away.

Messi, meanwhile, is currently a free agent after his Barcelona contract expired at the end of June.

The Argentinian has agreed to sign a new deal. However, Barca must sell a number of players before they can register it.

That is because the club has exceeded its LaLiga salary cap.

The league’s president Javier Tebas said last month (via Football Espana): “They have to reduce salaries in the squad consistently or produce fees from sold players.

“Publicly, I cannot tell of the plan Barcelona have.

“They know that if they don’t sell an important player of the current squad that they have players with contracts in force that they cannot include.”

Featured Image Credit: Getty