Brazilian defender Marcelo has been a very close friend of Cristiano Ronaldo during their time at Real Madrid. Their chemistry and camaraderie during celebrations were visible on the field as they went on to dominate Europe and win multiple accolades.
However in a recent interview with The Athletic, Marcelo claimed that Lionel Messi is the hardest opponent that he has faced in his illustrious career. He shared how the Argentine superstar is still going strong at 35. He also reminisced how the El Clasicos back then were the most high profile matches.
“Messi is incredible, the toughest opponent I’ve ever faced. We all know the quality he has even now, aged 35, and before it was the same. El Clasico has always been one of the best games to watch and play,” Marcelo told The Athletic.
Marcelo highlighted that the El Clasicos during that era were exceptional and he was lucky to play in that era. He felt that it was more about the crop of players and not only about Messi. “I was lucky enough to have featured in one of the best eras of Clasicos. But it wasn’t just Messi, there were other players who were also incredible,” Marcelo added.
It was arguably the best rivalry in football s two super teams in the world, FC Barcelona and Real Madrid went head-to-head against each other. Ronaldo often handed an advantage to the Blancos over his Argentina counterpart.
Marcelo left Real Madrid at the start of this season as his contract ran out. He joined Greek outfit, Olympiacos but left the club mid-season. He then joined Brazilian outfit, Fluminense where his footballing career started.
Marcelo also revealed his relationship with other Real Madrid players. He shared that he is in close connection with Sergio Ramos, Casemiro, Luka Modric and Karim Benzema. “There were a lot of videos of Cris and I doing jokes in training, the celebration (“Siuuuh!”) and so on, but Sergio (Ramos), Casemiro, Luka (Modric), Karim (Benzema)… I have a lot of friends in football,” he concluded.
Marcelo came to Real Madrid from Fluminense back in January 2007 and since then he had represented Los Blancos in 546 appearances before leaving the club at the start of this season. He is a five-time Champions League winner and six-time La Liga champion with Real Madrid.