Dani Alves has named Cristiano Ronaldo as his most difficult opponent across his storied career, with the Brazilian coming face-to-face with Manchester United’s Portuguese star on several occasions.
The two players shared the stage at the pinnacle of football for many years when they represented Barcelona and Real Madrid respectively.
Alves is football’s most decorated player, winning 43 trophies across all of his clubs, most notably for Barcelona, Juventus and Paris Saint-Germain.
Speaking to Marca, the legendary Brazilian looked back on his spectacular career and was asked to name the most difficult opponent he’s faced. To very little surprise, he named Ronaldo as the ‘machine’ he struggled with most.
“Cristiano Ronaldo,” Alves said unequivocally. “This b*stard doesn’t let you breathe for a second. I didn’t do too badly, but it’s difficult. He’s a scoring machine.”
The pair clashed every season for seven years in La Liga and they played on opposite flanks – meaning they would come up against each other more often than not.
If you’re asking a famous footballer who they struggled with most, the answer is always going to be Ronaldo or Lionel Messi – such is their stranglehold on football so far this century.
It can be argued that their class has propelled football to a new level and you must wonder if we’re ever going to see anything like it again.
They have combined to win a whopping 12 Ballon d’Or prizes and although it looks like the tally may end there, their legacies will live on for years to come.