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· Registered
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
this from

IT'S difficult to offer any criticism of the supremely talented Cristiano Ronaldo.

Especially in the warm afterglow of last season's double Footballer of the Year passing George Best's 40-year-old record of 32 goals from the wing on Wednesday night.

A quick glance in the reference books supports the theory the Portuguese trickster is a bit of a flat-track bully.

Ronaldo has played 30 Premier League games against Chelsea, Arsenal, Liverpool and Everton. In those 30, he has scored just six goals — three each against Arsenal and Everton — at an average of one every five matches.

He has yet to score against Chelsea in seven league games. Against Liverpool, who visit Old Trafford on Sunday, he has yet to find the net in six.

His overall Premier League record is 59 goals in 155 matches. Take away the six in 30 against United's closest rivals and you get 53 in 125 — an average of one every 2.35 games.

The conclusion is self-explanatory though you take the point goalscoring is not totally indicative of performing well.

Then there is Ronaldo's playing record in the Champions League. By no stretch of the imagination can his displays in this competition be compared with the mind-boggling performances he is producing in the Premier League.

Many will point out that Ronaldo has only just turned 23 and that he still has many years in which to adapt to Champions League football in the spectacular manner in which he has taken to the Premier League.

It's an impressive learning curve which, in terms of league goals, reads four in 29, five in 33, nine in 33, 17 in 34 and, already this season, an astonishing 24 in 26.
George Best is best

Others, though, will claim Ryan Giggs — another similar wonderboy — has never reached the heights in Europe once expected of him. Then we come to all the comparisons with Best.

In terms of what the Irishman had to contend with, there IS no comparison.

While Ronaldo and his manager may feel he sometimes gets a raw deal from opposition players, just imagine the wailing and gnashing of teeth had he had to contend with the sort of serious brutality handed out by the likes of Norman Hunter, Peter Storey and Chopper Harris.

But for Best's extraordinary balance, bravery and awareness of impending danger, he would have suffered career-threatening injury every season.

The Belfast boy was also a European Cup-winner and European Footballer of the Year.

Ronaldo supporters will again say he is only 23.

Yet Best was only 19 when on March 9, 1966, he produced what is still the greatest individual performance in United's long European history.

Protecting a 3-2 lead from the first leg of the European Cup quarter-final against Benfica, United had gone to the Stadium of Light with containment very much the uppermost thought.

Best, though, scored twice in the first 10 minutes to inspire United to a sensational 5-1 victory. He was untouchable.

As Sir Matt Busby said: “Our plan was to be cautious but somebody must have stuffed cotton wool in George's ears.â€

Two years later, just seven days after his 22nd birthday, he enthralled Wembley with the famous run from the centre-circle and shimmy round the Benfica keeper for the pivotal second goal in an ultimate 4-1 victory that earned United their first European Cup.

So, in many ways, it's too late to even attempt any comparisons.

Yet there is little doubt Ronaldo has his own special genius in an age when football is played at a pace and level of fitness unrecognisable from the Best era.

All the same, Ronaldo has to start producing when it really matters.

When better than against Liverpool on Sunday?

· Berbatov>Tevez
11,812 Posts
team wise - he musnt' prove anything against the big boys... we have rooney to do that...let him trash the small teams and rooney and tevez can do the big boys... now, that was team wise---- as for his personal ego..well - he won't be considered in the same league as zidane or figo or even ronaldinho ( remember the standing ovations for his humiliation of Real at Santiago Bernabeu,or his performance against Milan at San Siro ) unless he starts delivering and demolishing the big boys with his magical skills

· Registered
309 Posts
marty davidson said:
people say e does not preform in the champo league
score 6 goals so far
He didnt until this season with the exception of the home game against Roma last year. hopefully he can translate his group form into the knockout stages to prove he is worthy of the title " best player in the world"
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