Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard has changed his mind regarding the GOAT debate – insisting Cristiano Ronaldo is the greatest.
The 43-year-old followed the Real Madrid icon to Saudi Arabia in July after being appointed as the new Al Ettifaq boss.
Having enjoyed many battles with Ronaldo during his playing days against Manchester United, Gerrard has now faced him as a manager in the Middle East.
And having seen the Al Nassr striker up close, as well as seeing him take the Saudi Pro League by storm with 27 goals in 28 games, he has opted for the Portugal skipper as his GOAT.
It was only last year that he declared that Lionel Messi was his choice in the never-ending debate between the two footballing greats.
Speaking on Gary Neville’s The Overlap, he said: “It’s Lionel Messi for me.
“But I’m someone who would never have a derogatory word to say about Ronaldo because he is phenomenal.”
However, in a brand-new interview with the Saudi Pro League, it appears he has had a change of heart.
Gerrard gushed over Ronaldo’s influence, as he declared the five-time Ballon d’Or winner was the catalyst in a host of star-studded names to move to the Gulf nation.
He remarked: “The arrival of ‘The GOAT’ as we call him, Cristiano, him arriving in January obviously was a huge signing. He still had a lot of football to offer.
“So, from afar, for six months, I was looking in at Cristiano Ronaldo’s results, at the league, watching some games and watching some highlights.
“I think from that moment, the league around the world had become a very popular talking point for everyone.
“After Cristiano’s arrival, even more big-name signings, talents and skill sets were joining the league.
“At the time it coincided with me being out of the game and looking for my next opportunity, so I was fascinated from afar looking in.
“When my agent brought a couple of opportunities in the gulf area at the time, I was fascinated to explore them.”