5 defenders who got the better of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo
Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have proven to be h’uge nem’eses to opposition teams over t’he years, thanks to th’eir amazing expl’oits in front of goal. In fact, just the thought of facing’ these legendary attacke’rs is enough to rattle e’ven the be’st de’fenders in the wo’rld.
Going up ag’ainst 2 of the greatest footballers in history is no easy task. Defe’nders usu’ally pray for a lucky da’y every tim’e they face Lionel Me’ssi and Cris’tiano Ronaldo. They never forget to add that the duo sho’uld ha’ve an off day, such is their ruth’lessness in front of go’al.
As we’ve witnes’sed in rec’ent years, it take’s the effort of eleven men to stand a cha’nce of limiting the impact of Lion’el Messi and Cristiano Rona’ldo. However, there have bee’n so”me cases where defenders have man’aged to keep the duo at
Minutes90 m’inutes. On that note, here’s a look at 5 such defe’nders:
Cristia’no Ron’aldo gave R’eal Madrid an ear’ly lead from the spot wh’en they faced’ Juventus in the second leg of the’ir 2014-15 Champi’ons Leag’ue semi’-final clash. ‘ Mora’ta equalised shortly after the restart. That meant Los Blancos then needed to fi’nd another goal to sta’nd a chance of going thr’ough, after losing the first leg 2-1.
Ronaldo attac’ked fier’cely to find a goal. But Leonardo Bonucci, alongside Gio’rgio Chiellini, produced a defe’nsive masterclass to deny the Port’uguese, ensuring the game ended 1-1 a’nd Juventus went thro’ugh.
The Italian pul’led off a similar display agai’nst Lio’nel M’essi in the same to’urnament last season. Juventus lock’ed horns with Barcelona in the second leg of their group stage clash, and we’re up by two goals in 20 min’utes.
Messi tried all he co’uld to score and bring Barsa back into the game, but Bon’ucci proved to be more th’an a ha’ndful for the attacker. The Italia”n kept his Argentine counte’rpart at bay throughout 90 minutes, helping Juventus seal a convi’ncing 3-0 vict’ory away from ho’me.
The Spaniard was a roc’k at the back for Real Mad’rid against Barcelona in the 1st leg of the Spanish Super Cup at Cam’p Nou in 2017. The Blaugrana started the game with seve”ral attacks, but Sergio Ramos was alw’ays there to null’ify them.
The visit’ors we’nt ahe’ad via a Gerard Piq’ue own goal shortly after the rest’art as Lionel Messi cut a frus’trated f’igure throughout the match. His only cont’ribution was the pen’alty kic’k he converted. That onl”y served as consolati’on as Lo’s Blancos earned a 3-1 win.
Before that, Ram’os had pro’duced an excepti’onal defensive display to nullify Cristi’ano Ro’naldo when Portugal clashed with Spain in the semi-fin’al of E’uro 2’012. Ronaldo fired blank’s before the game was decided in a shootout that Spain won 4-2.