Lionel Messi can spot a good soccer player when he sees one. Standing on Spain’s eastern shores, the superstar looked north and pointed out Wayne Rooney, Robin van Persie and Sergio Aguero as the best players in the Premier League, according to the BBC.
“There are several quality players in the Premier League like Kun Aguero, who is my friend,” Messi said. “I really like how he plays.”Rooney [and] Van Persie are playing really well — they are great players.”
“No one player is the same as another,” said Messi, who has scored 50 goals in 44 appearances for club and country so far this season. I think each player has his own style, and we’re all different.”
It is unknown how much English soccer the reigning FIFA Ballon D’or winner watches. But each player he names is, like himself, a prolific goal scorer. Van Persie leads the league in goals with 26 (in 28 games). Rooney is second with 24 (20 games), and Aguero is third with 16 (26 games).
Their tallies pale in comparison to Messi’s, who has scored 30 goals in 25 La Liga games. His five-goal explosion against Bayer Leverkusen in the UEFA Champions League made some argue that he is the best to ever play the game.
Messi left some great players off his list. Gareth Bale and Scott Parker won last season’s player of the year awards (players’ and writers’ choices respectively), and are enjoying fine campaigns this time around. Manchester City’s marauding midfielder Yaya Toure, who played with Messi at Barcelona, must be in the conversation.
Sunderland striker Nicklas Bendtner thinks he’s the greatest striker in the world, so he certainly merits at least one vote. What do you think about Messi’s list? Vote in our poll below.