• Former Manchester United star named Cristiano Ronaldo as greatest of all time
  • Nani didn't mention Lionel Messi's name in GOAT talks
  • Ronaldo's 100th international goal was disallowed because of his former Manchester United teammate

A former Manchester United star has put Cristiano Ronaldo over Pele and Diego Maradona in greatest of all time debate but didn’t mention Lionel Messi’s name.

Luís Carlos Almeida da Cunha ComM, better known in soccer simply as Nani, recently weighed in on the greatest of all time debate. According to him, as far as being the best is concerned, no one can ever top his former teammate and fellow Portuguese Ronaldo.

In a Q&A session with fans on Football Wave (via Metro), Nani revealed that Ronaldo is not only his favorite Manchester United teammate, but also the greatest player to ever grace the pitch. Based on the 33-year-old’s assessment, Ronaldo is on the same level as Pele and Maradona but is still ahead of them and stats can back it up. Surprisingly, Nani didn’t say anything about Ronaldo’s soccer nemesis, Messi, which is something that is quite unusual as the Argentine is often mentioned along with Ronaldo’s name in most greatest of all time debates.

“My favourite was still Cristiano Ronaldo – the best. Best player ever? I have seen so many even from the past like (Diego) Maradona, Pele. But I would pick my companion of many battles, someone I have won so much with, someone I really respect. Numbers don’t lie and they also show he is the best – Cristiano Ronaldo,” Nani pointed out.

Cristiano Ronaldo hit back with four goals for Portugal after being substituted in Juventus's last two games.
Cristiano Ronaldo AFP / Marco Bertorello

Several years ago, the pair played together at Old Trafford from 2007-2009 before Ronaldo moved to Real Madrid. As teammates, they won two Premier League titles and the Champions League with the Red Devils in an incredibly successful time for the club. They also copped the title at Euro 2016 together playing for their home country Portugal.

Nani has now taken his talents to MLS, playing for Orlando City. He has been having quite a career in the said league scoring 12 goals in 33 appearances for the American club since joining from Sporting last year. The winger has picked up 112 caps for Portugal over an excellent career thus far, and has faced many of the greatest players of his era for club and country. However, he is best known for being the player who hindered Ronaldo in bagging his 100th international goal.

“CR7” has been stuck on 99 international goals since netting in a 2-0 win over Luxembourg in November. It will be remembered that before the ball crossed the line, Nani appeared from nowhere to head the ball over the line. The forme Man United winger was in an offside position resulting for Ronaldo’s 100th goal to be disallowed.

Ronaldo was reportedly got mad about what happened and Nani issued an apology via the media for apparently denying what could have been one of the greatest goals ever.