Messi better than Maradona, says Rohr

Super Eagles Manager Gernot Rohr believes Barcelona star Lionel Messi is slightly better than Argentine idol Diego Maradona. He said although the two football prodigies were similar in so many way, Messi looks better than the late Maradona in some other technical areas.

“I have a lot of sympathy for Messi. He’s a bit better because he was also very fair within a team and to the opponent – and didn’t have to score a goal with his hand (laughs),” Rohr told German regional newspaper Mannheimer Morgen. Rohr also admitted that Maradona was one of the greatest players to grace the game, recalling that he faced the former Napoli midfielder twice before hanging up his boots. Assuming they played in the same era, Rohr argued that Maradona was in the same bracket as his compatriot Messi.

The German football tactician, who was a right back in his playing days, revealed that he was assigned man-marking duties on the left-footed Maradona when Bordeaux faced off with Napoli in the last sixteen second leg of the old UEFA Cup in December 1988, a test he passed with flying colours as he prevented the number 10 from scoring.

Asked if Maradona was the greatest footballer of all time, Rohr told German regional newspaper Mannheimer Morgen : “I was lucky enough to play him twice. In 1983 he was even my direct opponent at the 100th anniversary of Girondins Bordeaux against Barcelona, and then again in the 1988/89 UEFA Cup, which Maradona then won with SSC Napoli.

“He was a gifted footballer. Maradona was smart, didn’t run much, but his left foot sucked the ball. “Unfor tu- n a t e l y, he had to fight hard after football. Applied to today’s conditions, one could compare him to Lionel Messi.”




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