Maradona or Pele? Don’t compare

PETALING JAYA: The football world lost another legend when Diego Maradona died of a heart attack. But even with his passing, the debate and the spirit of competition between the man famously known for ‘The Hand of God’ and another football legend, Pele, will always live on.

The discussion was played out everywhere around the world for years – who is better? Maradona or Pele?

The answer, at least in a consensus among Malaysians, is that we shouldn’t even be making a comparison to begin with as both were legends in their own right.

On The Star’s Facebook page, user Tanveer Sami said both Pele and Maradona were legends in their respective eras.

User Adialhadi Norawi made a similar comment, pointing out that both were football legends of different times.

“Both had been inspirational. Both were great. No need for comparison. Better to compare between Ronaldo and Messi, ” he said.

Joachim Vincente Peru said both Maradona and Pele were in a class of their own. Each had their own unique skill and personality, he added.

Segar Jeganathan said that both were uniquely great in their own way, adding that Pele used both his legs to play, while Maradona only used his left leg to “rule the world”.

Oviyah Viji, on the other hand, said “my grandfather chooses Pele and my father chooses Maradona. I choose Zidane and my kids might choose... A legend is a legend. No doubt, no fight.”

Zhong HW said comparing Maradona and Pele is like asking to choose “between Mohammad Ali or Mike Tyson, Roger Federer or Rafael Nadal, Lee Chong Wei or Lin Dan, Michael Jackson or Elvis Presley, Nike or Adidas, Coke or Pepsi, the list goes on.”

Not everyone refused to take sides.

According to Guna VS, Pele played in a Brazilian team full of multi-talented players while Maradona played in “an average Argentinian team with limited abilities”.

Tauriel Aragon argued that there was no such thing as total football during Pele’s time.

“Pele could stroll in the field with the ball, planning who to pass it to. But Maradona? They never gave him an inch, ” he said.

Zamree Abd Rahman chose a completely different answer, saying that legendary national football player Mokhtar Dahari would be the greatest footballer of all time.

Boonan Haeriwan Moktar supported the claims, saying that Mokhtar had the talent and skills to go as far as the soccer greats.

“Before Diego Maradona, there was one Mokhtar Dahari. The only problem is ‘Super Mokh’ was born in the wrong country, ” he said.

Maradona died on Wednesday after suffering a heart attack at his home in Buenos Aires, less than a month after his 60th birthday.

Pele, who celebrated his 80th birthday in October days before the Argentine turned 60, was magnanimous on hearing of Maradona’s death. “I lost a great friend and the world lost a legend.”

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Maradona , Pele , Mokhtar Dahari


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