Could it be the end of an era that there will be no Messi or Ronaldo in the Champions League quarterfinals for the first time in 16 years? After both stars got eliminated in the Champions League this week, Messi and Ronaldo mark a possible end of a golden era in European football.
It’s obvious it won’t last forever, but it was beautiful while it lasted. Now the Messi vs Ronaldo era may have ended today after 16 years of joy they brought to the world with their football. We should be grateful that at least one of the two greatest players who ever graced the game had been involved in the Champions League quarterfinals since the 2004-05 season. However, that changed this week as both got eliminated in the Round of 16. Moreover, out of all those years, Lionel Messi won four UCL titles while Cristiano Ronaldo won five. On the other hand, Ronaldo currently sits at 134 goals in the competition while Leo is at 120 goals.
Furthermore, there’s no doubt that both came to completely revolutionize the most important football tournament in the world. As a result, the whole world will be forever grateful for what they’ve done until now. We’re not saying they won’t have at least one more chance to win this competition yet again, but today feels like we are witnessing the end of an era after there will be no Messi or Ronaldo in the Champions League quarterfinals since the 2004-05 campaign.
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Meanwhile, many of us who saw the end of this era coming near a few years ago was depressed because this rivalry was over. But the recent years have given us a new rivalry to look forward to, in Kylian Mbappe and Erling Haaland.
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While we might not get another rivalry of this magnitude in our lifetime, the evolution is actually accelerating at a never-seen-before rate. Despite Ronaldo and Messi still active, it has only taken a few years to give us two new players who are making the headlines. This is one of the generational shifts that sports don’t usually produce quickly. As Ronaldo and Messi failed to meet the standard in the round of 16, both Haaland and Mbappe scored four goals each.
Irrespective of how this season ends for either of these players, one can’t deny the undertones of history in the making. Hence, we can only hope that these two new prospects can be half as successful as the other two veterans were for the last 16 years. Moreover, mere looking at their numbers, we have a good feeling about their careers.
So, get ready for another wild ride with these two young stars. It as well has the potential to be glorious just like the one that is ending right now! And that there would be no Messi or Ronaldo in the Champions League quarterfinals for the first time in 16 years doesn’t mean they have failed!