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WORLD CUP 2022

Messi vs Ronaldo: when could we see Argentina vs Portugal in 2022 World Cup?

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are considered by most people to be in the conversation for greatest of all time, so how do we see them head to head?

Update:
Students carry paintings depicting soccer players Diego Maradona, Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi ahead of FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022, outside an art school in Mumbai, India, November 18, 2022. REUTERS/Niharika Kulkarni
NIHARIKA KULKARNIREUTERS

Two players of the modern game are coming to the end of their careers at the very, very top. Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi are believed to be in the handful of footballing superstars who can make a claim to be the best ever. Clearly it’s a debate that is unlikely to ever be agreed on, as generational changes and weighted arguments will never be truly aligned, but it’s fun nonetheless.

As we entered the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, there was a realisation by everyone that this is almost certainly going to be the final occasion when either global phenomenon would be seen strutting their stuff on the biggest international stage. And that got people licking their lips at the prospect of both locking horns as they did at their peaks for Barcelona and Real Madrid in LaLiga.

So when could Portugal face Argentina in Qatar?

Messi, Ronaldo, Mbappé, Kane, Vela World Cups
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Messi, Ronaldo, Mbappé, Kane, Vela: World Cups prior to Qatar 2022AS English

Messi vs Ronaldo: a World Cup final for the ages

The two nations began the 2022 World Cup on opposite side of the draw, Argentina in Group C and Portugal in Group H. If they both were to top their groups, then they could not face each other until the showpiece final on 18 December.

Despite an early scare for Argentina, both teams did finish in first place of their respective groups, so anyone wishing to see this clash of GOATs earlier will be disappointed.

World Cup quarter final line-up
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World Cup quarter final line-up

So, what are the chances of this happening? Well, it may be a lovely idea, but based on the form seen thus far my money would not be on this legendary head-to-head coming to fruition. Portugal -- ironically without a certain CR7 look a tempting prospect but still have either France or England to get past, assuming they take care of Morocco in the quarter finals. Argentina, still depending on the ageless abilities of Messi, have a tough game ahead against the Netherlands, before an almost certain clash with the impressive Brazilians.

Nevermind, however, as maybe they’ll both end up in an oil-rich league against each other or in the same team.

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