Ronaldo has more work to do, says Pelé

2014-01-14 13:14

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Paris – Fifa Ballon d’Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo must continue to maintain his high standards in order to be classed as one of the sport’s legends, said Brazil great Pelé, who compared the Ronaldo to Eusébio.

Portugal and Real Madrid forward Ronaldo beat Argentina’s Lionel Messi and France’s Franck Ribery to claim the prestigious award yesterday.

“To me, the last true great was [French playmaker Zinedine] Zidane. He stayed at the same very high level for at least 10 years,” Pelé, who was awarded an honorary Ballon d’Or, told France Football magazine today.

Ronaldo is on the right path, though, and reminded the three-time World Cup winner of former Portugal striker Eusébio, the top scorer at the 1966 World Cup, who died earlier this month at the age of 71.

“Today, Messi and Ronaldo are above the rest. Ronaldo reminds me a bit of Eusébio, he is well bred. He has the elegance and the creativity of the great players,” Pelé said.

Winning the World Cup used to have greater significance in the voting for the Ballon d’Or, but the success of Ronaldo and Messi, who won the award from 2009-12, proved that was no longer true, according to the Brazilian.

“It is perhaps less important than it used to be when I was playing,” Pelé said of the showpiece tournament that the duo will look to win for the first time later this year.

“I’m not saying it is not essential to win the World Cup, but the Champions League now has the same considerable impact celebrity-wise.”

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