European football

Beckham: "Messi is unique; Cristiano is not at his level"

The former Real Madrid midfielder weighed in on the Messi-Ronaldo debate, saying both were "head and shoulders" above the rest.

Beckham saluda a Messi en presencia de Pastore tras el Barça-PSG de 2013 disputado en el Camp Nou.
REUTERS

Former Real Madrid and Manchester United midfielder David Beckham believes that Cristiano Ronaldo and Leo Messi are "head and shoulders" above the competition in terms of who is the greatest active player, but added that the Juventus striker is "not at the same level" as the Barcelona forward. 

Speaking to Argentinean broadcaster Télam Beckham, who faced Messi in the Champions League during his spell at PSG in 2012-13, said: "Messi is unique as a player and there isn't anybody else like him. Both he and Cristiano, who is not at the same level as Messi, are head and shoulders above the rest." 

Beckham and Messi met in 2012-13

Recalling his encounter with the Argentina captain, Beckham added: "We were ahead and he came on and Barcelona scored. Despite my age, I enjoyed playing and the team played well in both legs. We did things that we can be proud of. They didn't beat us." 

Both legs ended in a draw - 2-2 in the Parc des Princes and 1-1 at Camp Nou - with Barça progressing on away goals only to be thrashed 7-0 on aggregate in the quarter-finals by eventual champions Bayern Munich.