Stephen Ireland Lists His Unique Players. Check Them Out

Stephen Ireland

Ex-Manchester City and Aston Villa midfielder Stephen Ireland says he got the better of both Messi and Ronaldo while facing them during his active days.

Ireland has shockingly scorned Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo as the toughest players he played with in his career.

The 36-year-old played against a portion of the absolute best players in world football all through his career, and has now named his hardest rivals.

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Notwithstanding, Stephen Ireland named Cesc Fabregas and Eden Hazard as his toughest and best players ahead of Ronaldo and Messi. Speaking to talkSPORT, he said

‘Lionel Messi played [against me], he wasn’t good. We won the game. I can’t say that Messi is the best player I’ve played against because my experience in that game was that he wasn’t good. Hence why I said Cesc Fabregas. Every time I played against him, very good. Eden Hazard, very, very good. So that is my opinion based on that question. I think Hazard, he is the first name that comes to mind.’

The former Man City midfielder believes he got the better of the pair while going head to head in all games.

Ireland kept on talking about the times he played against Ronaldo, explaining why he doesn’t really believe that the 38-year-old was his hardest opponent.

‘I played against Cristiano Ronaldo four or five times for Manchester City against Manchester United and we won every single game we played against him,’ he continued.

‘So it is very hard for me to say that Ronaldo is the best player I have played against. I can only go off their performance on the day against me.’

Fabregas, who plys his trade for Serie B side Como, lifted the Premier League alongside Hazard two times during their time together at Stamford Bridge.

Hazard left Chelsea as a Premier League legend but has since struggled with Real Madrid, while Ronaldo and Messi have left long-lasting legacies with several Ballon d’Or’s between them.

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