Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo could reignite their iconic rivalry

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo could be set to reignite their iconic rivalry once again in a pre-season friendly, as Barcelona announce annual Joan Gamper Trophy exhibition against Juventus

  • Famous rivalry could be renewed at Barcelona’s Nou Camp ground on August 8
  • The Spanish giants will face the Italian side in Joan Gamper Trophy exhibition 
  • It will be a double-header, with the women’s sides also clashing in Catalonia
  • Messi is yet to sign a verbally agreed contract due to the club’s financial turmoil 

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo could be set to reignite their iconic rivalry, as Barcelona have announced they will face Juventus in a pre-season friendly.

The two sides will clash in the Joan Gamper Trophy exhibition match at a partly-open Nou Camp on August 8, meaning the pair could play on the same pitch for the first time since December 2020 in the Champions League. 

There will be a double-header, with the women’s sides of both clubs playing each other at Barcelona’s stadium, which will be capped at 20 per cent capacity.

Lionel Messi (right) and Cristiano Ronaldo (left) could be set to reignite their iconic rivalry

The duo last faced off when Messi’s Barcelona played Ronaldo’s Juventus in December 2020

Messi and Ronaldo are widely considered to be the two best players in the world and are arguably both in the conversation to be the best two players of all time. 

The diminutive Argentine has won a record six Ballon d’Or awards – probably the most prestigious individual award in the sport – to the Portuguese’s five.

But Ronaldo, 36, edges out Messi, 34, for career goals scored. According to the IFFHS, the Juventus star has 783 in ‘top-level competitions’, while the Barcelona stalwart has 748, putting them first and fourth respectively on the all-time list.

Messi has won a record six Ballon d’Or awards to Ronaldo’s five spanning his glittering career

Their clash however depends on Messi signing a new contract in the two weeks until the match, with a five-year deal on a 50 per cent salary cut verbally agreed.

The Catalan club’s financial turmoil means their star man and captain is yet to put pen to paper on the contract, with swingeing cuts needed to avoid big names being stuck in limbo.

The Gamper Trophy has been contested by Barcelona every year since its introduction in 1966, as a traditional warm-up before their seasons begins – Ronald Koeman’s side have won the last eight.




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