Regardless of what Lionel Messi is capable of accomplishing, Cristiano Ronaldo is equally capable of doing so, and vice versa.
For more than a decade, it appears that this has been the way the two football legends have been thinking.
Barcelona's Lionel Messi would score four goals against Real Madrid, while Cristiano Ronaldo would score a brace for the visitors.
Spain's incredible rivalry between Real Madrid and Barcelona lasted nine magnificent seasons and is one of the reasons the two teams have a combined total of 11 Ballon d'Or awards.
Even though both legends are nearing the conclusion of their illustrious careers, they continue to be two of the finest players on the planet - if not the best two players on the planet - and are among the favorites to win the Ballon d'Or award in 2021, which will be their last.
In order to avoid being eclipsed by his long-time nemesis at Paris Saint-Germain, Neymar, Ronaldo is doing everything he can to win the most coveted individual accolade in club football while it is still up for grabs.
According to the Manchester Evening News, Messi's brace against RB Leipzig on Tuesday brought him level with one of Cristiano Ronaldo's Champions League scoring records.
This was Messi's 38th different opponent in the Champions League, and the first time he had scored against them. Phenomenal.
The following day, Ronaldo scored the exciting winning goal for Manchester United against Atalanta at Old Trafford, raising his total number of goals against opponents in the Champions League to 39 in his first season in the competition.
Is it possible that Messi was on his mind when he walked onto the pitch on Wednesday? Do you think the Portuguese icon ran around like a demon in the second half after watching the South American score twice against RB Leipzig?
No one can say for certain, but there's no denying that Messi has influenced Ronaldo throughout their remarkable careers - and that the same is true for Ronaldo.
Both sportsmen deserve all of the accolades in the world for having remained at the top of their respective fields for such an extended period of time.
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