Xtratime Community banner

Who was a greater player?

1 - 20 of 34 Posts

· Registered
Joined
·
14,854 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·

· Registered
Joined
·
587 Posts
Even if titles might say otherwise (dunno maybe they are more or less on the same level, think the Frenchie has more on his cabinet), a freak of nature like R9 is a more rare specimen than Zizou as great as Zizou was and would allways be. Leaving this aside, they are both more role oriented players than the upper echelon of all around/wild card geniuses that has it al...so more than being faced against each other, we were lucky to have them both playing for each other as it should be.
 

· Administrator
Joined
·
54,358 Posts
Zidane was my third favourite player of all time.

But have to go with Ronaldo, my jaw was on the floor every time I saw peak Ronaldo play. That level of athleticism and skill combined was and still is unheard of. Just ridicolous. He played with such casual indifference while destroying entire defences.


But sadly that indifference also painted his whole career to not be as dominant as he should been, he had it all except mentally be super hungry champion (he was content with just individal numbers, more busy partying and enjoying ze good life), plus the injuries.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
14,854 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Just to push back a little against the consensus, it's clear most people preffer peak R9 over peak Zizou, but do the injuries not count as a minus when we compare their legacies? R9 and Ronaldinho seem to be 2 players that allot of people judge solely on their prime.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
49,744 Posts
I don't think I've seen anything like Zidane in terms of impact, like @ToniSamp said...a guy who makes a team so much better just by stepping on the pitch.

We all have different ways of valuing prime, longevity, etc. But if you asked me for my All-Time Top 5 right now, R9 would be there and Zidane wouldn't (i.e. I'm valuing prime a lot). The locks are Pele #1, Messi #2. And Messi didn't need a WC to get there.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
598 Posts
Ronaldo Nazario from Inter or Barcelona in tems of 1v1 on the ground probably is infinietly better than every pleayer ever put step on the earth. In terms of influence on the team (what is maybe bit more important from perspective of whole career) maybe Zidane.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
587 Posts
It's not a question of prime, is a question of rarity when it comes to this two if someone says that R9 was a more special specimen.
And even taking the trolling aside, both the R9 "the best ever" without injuries and "the impact" of Zidane the best ever, just go quite a bit over the top and I'm being nice with the quite a bit.

We also tend to allways in a nostalgic way talk about how excessively praised can a player today be, that has a portion of truth in it, but we rarely talk about how nit picking and over the top todays perfomances are analyzed and seen in comparison to those from even these two that didn't play that long ago, in such terms we are a bit extremely gracious with them.
 

· DAGOODS = RATINGS
Joined
·
22,757 Posts
R9 was/is unique.

There are only two footballers who remain unique and they are MALDINI & R9.

Name me another LB who was capable of playing as a LCB and dominate world football?

KROL was more of a sweeper so were SCHNELLINGER and FACCHETTI.
CHIELLINI comes to mind but he was way too limited.

On the right flank you have the likes of THURAM, BERGOMI, GENTILE, VOGTS, Djalma Santos and Carlos Alberto to a lesser degree, who were dominant as fullbacks and center-backs.

IL FENOMENO? a young Romario somewhat comes close but nowhere near as phenomenal. HENRY and CR7 lacked the positioning, dribbling, and finishing skills of one IL FENOMENO.
 
  • Like
Reactions: RedShiny

· *the drum drum*
Joined
·
44,165 Posts
Just to push back a little against the consensus, it's clear most people preffer peak R9 over peak Zizou, but do the injuries not count as a minus when we compare their legacies? R9 and Ronaldinho seem to be 2 players that allot of people judge solely on their prime.
Injuries prevented Ronaldo from being as dominant as he could have been.

But they also showed us the true depth of his skillset. He was able to remain amongst the best footballers of his time despite losing his God given physical abilities.

And all in all, I don't think Zidane won so much more or performed better over so much longer than Ronaldo did. He just finished on a higher note.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
49,744 Posts
It's not a question of prime, is a question of rarity when it comes to this two if someone says that R9 was a more special specimen.
And even taking the trolling aside, both the R9 "the best ever" without injuries and "the impact" of Zidane the best ever, just go quite a bit over the top and I'm being nice with the quite a bit.
The impact part is just my perception...but when I say impact, I don't mean goals and assists necessarily but presence. Maybe the best way to look at it is to see how the team does when he isn't present...most notably, Paraguay in 1998 and then Senegal and Urguay in 2002. The difference is pretty astounding, especially when you consider that the sides had many exceptional players. And the players themselves spoke of him as a talisman of sorts, lol. You had grown ass men looking like scrubs when he wasn't on the pitch. And let's not forget that France lost to Italy on PK's without Zidane...isn't it nuts that people blame a guy who isn't on the pitch for a PK shootout loss? It is nuts but that tells you about the impact.

As for prime, R9's prime was when he was THE specimen; the Phenomenon. It's true though, as @Zico 10 mentioned, that R9's career wasn't short. He was able to extend his career by adjusting his game in 2002 and after that. Amazing player then...but imo, it doesn't compare to the previous iteration which was virtually unstoppable. Did prime R9 have limitations? A couple...not too great with headers, left foot wasn't great...and he had a very strict preference for receiving the ball directly to his feet via ground passes. In the case of many other strikers, this would mean they're out of the big conversation...but R9's abilities on the ball make us disregard the limitations and still make him a top EVER player.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
587 Posts
The impact part is just my perception...but when I say impact, I don't mean goals and assists necessarily but presence. Maybe the best way to look at it is to see how the team does when he isn't present...most notably, Paraguay in 1998 and then Senegal and Urguay in 2002. The difference is pretty astounding, especially when you consider that the sides had many exceptional players. And the players themselves spoke of him as a talisman of sorts, lol. You had grown ass men looking like scrubs when he wasn't on the pitch. And let's not forget that France lost to Italy on PK's without Zidane...isn't it nuts that people blame a guy who isn't on the pitch for a PK shootout loss? It is nuts but that tells you about the impact.

As for prime, R9's prime was when he was THE specimen; the Phenomenon. It's true though, as @Zico 10 mentioned, that R9's career wasn't short. He was able to extend his career by adjusting his game in 2002 and after that. Amazing player then...but imo, it doesn't compare to the previous iteration which was virtually unstoppable. Did prime R9 have limitations? A couple...not too great with headers, left foot wasn't great...and he had a very strict preference for receiving the ball directly to his feet via ground passes. In the case of many other strikers, this would mean they're out of the big conversation...but R9's abilities on the ball make us disregard the limitations and still make him a top EVER player.
I know that you meant it in that way Firdy, but even leaving aside the Peles, Diegos or Messis of this world, when you put Zizou in the conversation with a Di Setfano, Johan or even Platini whose impact was beyond imaginable, I feel it's quite a bit over the top. He certainly was greater for France than his clubs, even thought he was fantastic for them but the thing here is in an all time impact whatever metric we can use, he'll fall short.

The real problem behind R9 (and lots of players from that period) was the abuse of anabolics, while looking like they didn't fully grasp or care what consequences would carry in the long term, drugs were used, are used (the build of nowadays players and the way that the major ones are recovered in short periods to the very least implies at some moment some grey area), will be used, in those days the abusive infiltrations and anabolics were the order of the day and in the case of R9 some moron decided that they didn't want the skinny Cruzeiro kiddo.

Also like Zico said, even in his more "big" and powerfull days (sometimes I wish he just kept his Cruzeiro physique, less size than his Euro days, but enough talent and power to be exceptional and unique anyway): he had the tendecy of moving forward the ball in long strides when running with it, it wasn't precisly a Zico (the player ;)) tight spaces with lots of dinamic and control, he had great control and great pisadas like we say down here, specially for a striker, such a silky fast giant, was a fascinating and frighting thing to watch and admire...but when for all the reasons we know he started to loose even slightly his power, he just couldn't impose as he did in the past.
Even RG without major injuries and all the skills in the world, neither had that tight really close control with pace/speed and lots of people can't just see beyond an elastico, stepover or such and just can't see that a certain player stopped and threw one of those lots of times because if not he would have lost control or just can get away from his marker, other times is just fun stuff, an intelligent pause, or a brilliant pour le gallerie, but the very very very upper echelon start their moves and the goal is at the other end no matter space, rivales, if its them or putting the ball for someone to score...evrything at a pace and vision that it's just beyond belief, allways in full control. This is sthg that even pro players many times seem to not get.

BTW even as awuful as R9 injuries were, there was such a desire from all of us for him to recover and watch him in full form and the inclination of everyone loving the "what ifs.." that we tend to go a bit over the top. Maradona for instance it's never mentioned in such a fashion, but his injury in Barcelona: ankle broken and ligaments in tatters, was of the sort of a high probablity to not even walk in a proper way again, less play pro football, more in that era. The same with Pele, the way Edson was smashed and treated and his injuries could have ended his carreer too. We all know how these two came back from them, sometimes even as a better all around player. So I do not indulge that vision to the degree sometimes is spoken, even if it has lots of truth in it and he was obviosuly dammaged, there is also a clear and very romantic element when people talk about them.
 

· *the drum drum*
Joined
·
44,165 Posts
The biggest ‘what if’ for me is Baggio. We didn’t even get to see him play a single professional match (at the top level I mean) before he was permanently changed by injury.

But you’re right, the what if line of thought is always filled with romance and optimism.

In the case of Baggio, I doubt he’d have found Buddhism the way he did if he wasn’t injured and as a result highly depressed. We might’ve actually ended up with a lesser version in that alternate reality.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
14,854 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Duncan Edwards is the biggest what if. Not many central midfielders ever reached the Ballon d'Or podium, but he did it at 20.
 
1 - 20 of 34 Posts
Top