Sports rivalries attract people from all around. People care about rivalry that happens on the field due to the fact that it is between the players. Off the field, it's usually between the fans. Players don't want this, though, because a big injury might happen among the fans.
One of the biggest rivalries in the world is between the Spanish soccer teams, Real Madrid CF and FC Barcelona. Specifically, the rivalry between 27-year-old Cristiano Ronaldo and 25-year-old Lionel Messi. But, it started even before Ronaldo was at Real Madrid.
Ronaldo guided his team, Manchester United, to the UEFA Champions League final. If they had won, they would have been the first to have won two consecutive Champions Leagues. Unfortunately for Manchester United fans, Messi and Barcelona did things differently then Ronaldo and Manchester United, including their use of short passing, forcing their opponents to yield via possession.
Let's take a look at other sports since there are more rivalries than just in the face of the sport of soccer. In the United States, there's a variety of rivalries. For example, today there is the rivalry between golfers, Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods. In past boxing, there was Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier which spanned their three bouts and shaped the culture of the time. In tennis, there's Venus and Serena Williams. The thing which makes them unique is that they have been mostly facing each other in the Grand Slams which itself is one achievement and shows the high class skills and reputation of both the sisters. (The Tennis Freaks)
The biggest rivalry in the U.S was between Larry Bird and Magic Johnson. In what was probably the most anticipated NCAA Basketball clash to date in 1979, Bird's Indiana State side went into the final of their championship decider with a 33-0 record. However, that was set to change as Johnson led his Michigan team to glory, ending their opponents' invincible run of results. A rivalry would start for the next seven years. (Goal.com)
Following the start of the NBA in the 1980s, Bird, now playing for the Boston Celtics, and Magic, playing for the LA Lakers, would meet again in three more finals. The CA side would prevail in two of them, but between 1980 and 1989, both teams won eight of the nine championships. They would be credited with helping keep the future of the league. (Goal.com)
Contrast the two countries: United States and Spain. The United States focuses on football and other variety of sports. But, unlike the US, Spain truly cares only about one sport.
Is the rivalry between Messi and Ronaldo the best in sports? It depends on what you enjoy sportswise.