Barcelona’s Croatian midfielder Ivan Rakitic was once again full of praise for his Barcelona teammate and the Argentina captain Lionel Messi, during an interview with Croatian newspaper Vecernji.
Messi controls so many variables in a team sport that it is not otherworldly to think that the Barcelona man could have won a lot more titles had he been playing in an individual sport like tennis where he might have been able to exercise more influence on the final outcome of the match -- given he had any talent for the sport in question.
Rakitic, who will be key player for his country in the upcoming World Cup in Russia said that Messi would have won 50 grand slams playing tennis.
“Messi is such a dominant sportsman that he would have won 50 grand slams if he was a tennis player”.
Two of the greatest tennis stars of the modern era, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal have managed 36 grand slams between them. Rakitic assumed that Messi is just that good even if one excuses hyperbole.
Indeed Messi plays in a natural way that shows a level of spatial understanding which probably would land him the title for the greatest sportsman in the world. Rakitic however would have the toughest job at the coming World Cup -- thwarting Messi’s genius as Argentina and Croatia have been placed in the same group.
The Croatian midfielder suggested that even though Messi had said Argentina are not among the favourites, having the best player in the world still made the La Albiceleste one of the favourites.
“When you have the best player in the world you are the favourite, even though he says that's not true,” Rakitic concluded.