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Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? - Sports - Nairaland

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Poll: Pele or Maradona?

Pele: 70% (51 votes)
Maradona: 29% (21 votes)
This poll has ended

Pele Vs Maradona Vs Zidane Vs Ronaldo Luis Vs Ronaldinho Vs Messi Vs CR7 Vs J.j / Messi Vs Maradona / Pele Vs. Maradona : A Hot Discussion On Who Was Greater Of The Two (1) (2) (3) (4)

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Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by blkmum700: 6:08pm On Feb 02, 2008
Following Diego Maradona’s controversial comments about Pele yesterday, Carlo Garganese asks the question: Who was the greatest?

There are some things in this world that simply cannot be agreed on. For example; the Rolling Stones vs The Beatles, Magic Johnson vs Michael Jordan, and Pele vs Maradona.   

This last question has split opinion almost more than any other and will continue to do so forever.   

So how do you judge how good a player is? Well there are many ways.   

Medals & Trophies   

Pele won three World Cups, two Copa Libertadores’, two Intercontinental Cups and a host of other Brazilian and American titles, while he picked up the FIFA Player of the Century Award in 2000.   

Maradona on the other hand won just a single World Cup, league titles in Argentina and Italy, national Cups in Spain and Italy, and a horde of individual honours including best player at the 1986 World Cup, FIFA Goal of the Century, and FIFA Player of the Century (People’s Choice).   

Some would argue that the fact that Pele won three World Cups to Maradona’s one, would make him the better player.   

Of course team prizes, the greatest of them all being the World Cup, are very important, however it is totally incorrect to judge a player solely on the trophies they won. Pele was a young 17-year-old in 1958, barely made an impact in 1962 and 1966 due to injury, and in 1970, despite his fine performances, he was playing in the best football team of all time alongside the likes of Tostao, Rivelino, Gerson and Jairzinho.   

Maradona however dragged a distinctly average Argentina team all the way to World Cup glory in 1986, scoring the greatest goal of all time against England in the quarter-final, and another almost equally as brilliant against Belgium in the semis.   

As has been stated on numerous occasions in the past, Brazil would have won the 1970 World Cup with or without Pele. Sixteen years later Argentina probably wouldn’t have got past Enzo Francescoli’s Copa America holders Uruguay in the second round without Maradona in their side.   

This doesn’t necessarily make Maradona a better player. Although one has to ask themselves the question. If Pele was playing for Argentina in 1986 – would they have won the World Cup? I very much doubt it.   

Goals Scored   

Supporters of Pele always boast how he scored 1281 goals in 1363 games. First of all it must be pointed out that there is a great deal of uncertainty over this total. Many of these goals were scored for Santos in the state and local championships, where the opposition was not that strong.   

Nevertheless with 77 goals in 92 appearances for Brazil, 12 of them in the World Cup, no one can question Pele’s astonishing goalscoring ability.   

Maradona hit 34 in 91 appearances, eight in World Cups, and had a career total of 311 in 590 appearances.   

Once again you should not read too much into goal statistics such as these. A great player or forward will score goals when they really matter, such as in big title deciders or cup knockout matches.   

Some prolific goalscorers from the past have not always necessarily produced their best in these big games. Followers of Italian football will know that Alberto Gilardino has a fine record for Milan, however he has always struggled to score against the top teams or in the important matches.   

Both Pele and Maradona did this, so in this respect they cannot be separated.   

Fair Play   

This is the argument that Pele is the greatest because Maradona is a poor role model - Diego’s substance abuse and the fact that he ‘cheated’ with his ‘hand of god’ goal against England in 1986 makes him a lesser player.   

This hypothesis is frankly ridiculous. Regardless of how poorly Maradona behaved off the pitch, and how much he bended the rules on it, this all makes no difference to how great a player he was.   

Indeed in central and southern Europe and South America, being crafty and sneaky is seen as a major part of the game. If you can con the referee or an opponent and score a goal because of it, then you are tactically and mentally a better player.   

While on moral grounds Maradona can be criticised for his cocaine addiction, it should not interfere with how he is regarded as a footballer. Do you say that Amy Winehouse is a bad singer because she takes drugs? I don’t think so.   

Pele is no angel either. Indeed some would argue that, as part of the “FIFA Family” along with Sepp Blatter, Joao Havelange and Co, he is indeed worse than Maradona. Politics is the disease of football and one only has to look at the annual shortlist for the FIFA World Player of the Year to realise this.   

It should also be cleared up that Maradona never took performance-enhancing drugs, as is often mistakenly believed. Cocaine actually results in a drop in the level of play, and indeed Diego said yesterday that he would have been three-times the player he was without his addiction.   

Video Footage   

Deciding who was better out of Pele and Maradona is difficult due to the lack of video footage that was around during the 1950s and 60s when Pele was in his prime.   

Maradona burst on the scene during an age when football was exploding into a multi-million-pound business. The footage of Pele is mainly restricted to that from World Cups. Indeed the King said himself that the greatest goal he ever scored, when he supposedly took on an entire team, was deleted from the archives a couple of decades ago.   

With this in mind it is perhaps wrong to use video footage to decide who was better out of Maradona and Pele.   Best clip compilations on the Internet are dangerous. I could put a highlights package of all the best moments and tricks from Emile Heskey’s career and claim that he was in fact the best player of all time.   

Ok I probably couldn’t – but you get my point. In order to decide how good a player is, you have to see them for the full 90 minutes, on a regular and consistent basis.   

Longevity, which both of these players had, is important too. It is no good being world-class for two years before disappearing from the game. These players are legends because they were at the top of world football for 15 years or more. This is what makes the likes of Paolo Maldini, now in his 23rd year of top-flight football such a phenomenon.   

Pele Came Before Maradona   

One thing that is important to recognise is that Pele was 10 maybe 20 years ahead of his time. His footballing brain was like no other.   

“I told myself before the game, 'he's made of skin and bones just like everyone else' - but I was wrong,” said Tarciso Burgnich of Italy after the 1970 World Cup final.   

Some say that if there was no Pele, there would have been no Cruijff, Zico, Maradona, Baggio or Zidane.   

Deciding who was better out of Pele and Maradona is a hugely difficult answer to arrive at.   

I have laid out a number of arguments above and now it is up to you, the fans, to decide.   

I reach my own answer by asking myself whether Argentina would have won the World Cup in 1986 had they had Pele instead of Maradona.   

For me the answer is no, and for this reason I would say that Maradona had more of an ‘individual’ impact on a team than Pele.     
However we will never know for sure the answer to this question.   

What are your views on this topic? Who was the greatest – Pele or Maradona? Goal.com wants to know what YOU think   

I will go for Pele he has more record than Maradona and he is also a cheat he cant play football without cocaine. Lets hear your comment here.
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by deb(m): 4:04pm On Jun 02, 2009
I can't put them side by side.
They are not in the same generation and they play different position
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by Jarus(m): 5:19pm On Jun 02, 2009
Pele Vs Maradona. Zidane Vs Ronaldinho. C.Ronaldo Vs Messi.
These appear to be the hottest, most dragged football personality debates in history.

Personally, I go like this: For the latter two, I will easily choose Zidane and Messi. But I don't have much info to make a categorical choice in the first debate, as I have only watched highlights of Pele's game(and highlights could at times be misleading).
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by switch47(m): 7:38pm On Jun 02, 2009
Also GABA LAWAL & MIKEL Who is better?? shocked
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by jalether(m): 11:15pm On Jun 02, 2009
most people, except (English) knows Maradonna

is the best footballer ever period. dont compare him to anyone in the realm of football

pele vs ronaldo( R9) would ve been a fairer comparison.
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by biina: 1:46am On Jun 03, 2009
Maradona is the most skillfull football player ever, but Pele played well ahead of his time.
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by FBS: 7:53am On Jun 03, 2009
Most (if not all) folks on NL never saw Pele play full 90 mins but Maradona, most did.
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by Meldrick(m): 11:10am On Jun 03, 2009
Quote from Boleiro(a spaniard)
They both played same position for 21 years
Pele scored 1281 gols
Maradona 345
When Pele played if there was ONE camera on the field it was a strike of lucky.
Today you see gols Maradona scored in practice
Pele played when there was no yellow card and the fields sometimes had no grass.
Ask people who saw then both play : Menotti, Beckenbauer, Ratin, Ramos Delgado etc.
These internet kids who know NOTHING about the game…, want to have an opinion.
Argentinians cant stand the fact that Pele` is BLACK and that Brasil is the soccer reference worldwide.

so what do un think?
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by jalether(m): 1:40pm On Jun 03, 2009
until pele or any footballer for that matter can single handedly win the world

cup like Maradona did in 86, he (maradona) remains the best player ever.
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by Sauron1: 5:29pm On Mar 14, 2010
jalether:

most people, except (English) knows Maradonna

is the best footballer ever period. dont compare him to anyone in the realm of football

pele vs ronaldo( R9) would ve been a fairer comparison.

The fact is Pele isn't even the best Brazilian footballer ever.
Garincha shits on Pele everyday of the week. . . .
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by chic2pimp(m): 5:47pm On Mar 14, 2010
Tbh, Me thinks it is Interchangable either Pele or Maradona you can't go wrong.

Most peeps that saw pele play say he was the greatest likewise with Maradona.
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by Sauron1: 5:51pm On Mar 14, 2010
chic2pimp:

Tbh, Me thinks it is Interchangable either Pele or Maradona you can't go wrong.

Most peeps that saw pele play say he was the greatest likewise with Maradona.

Maradona is miles ahead of Pele. . . .
Pele played around better players(Didi, Vava, Garincha).
Even the 1970 world cup they won. . . .Brazil had Tostao, Rivelino, Carlos Alberto, etc.

Maradona won a world cup single-handedly with 10 other chumps
I don't think Pele coulda done that in Maradona's shoes.
Pele is a great player but he won't be in my top three.
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by chic2pimp(m): 6:06pm On Mar 14, 2010
~Sauron~:

Maradona is miles ahead of Pele. . . .
Pele played around better players(Didi, Vava, Garincha).
Even the 1970 world cup they won. . . .Brazil had Tostao, Rivelino, Carlos Alberto, etc.

Maradona won a world cup single-handedly with 10 other chumps
I don't think Pele coulda done that in Maradona's shoes.
Pele is a great player but he won't be in my top three.
Is Maradona miles ahead of pele?, IMO absolutely not
Is he better than Pele?well, that's down to peeps personal opinions.
While Pele played with better player I wouldn't necessary call those other players chumps.

That's the great thing about footy we all have different opinions.
For Example I think Ronaldo is the Greatest Striker ever however many peeps would laugh @ me for dearing to say that. 



P:S Name your top 3 players of all time
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by Sauron1: 6:12pm On Mar 14, 2010
chic2pimp:

Is Maradona miles ahead of pele?, IMO absolutely not

Maradona is streets ahead of Pele. . . .Forget his off-the-pitch shenanigans. . . .
He was the heart n soul of the Argentine team that won the 86 world cup. . . .Something Pele never did.
Pele never played in Europe. . . . .Maradona lifted a second rated Napoli in Italy and won European titles with them
What else do you need?


Is he better than Pele?well, that's down to peeps personal opinions.
While Pele played with better player I wouldn't necessary call those other players chumps.

All the Brazilians i have spoken to have told me Garincha was a better player than Pele.


That's the great thing about footy we all have different opinions.
For Example I think Ronaldo is the Greatest Striker ever however many peeps would laugh @ me for dearing to say that. 

I also agree Ronaldo is the greatest striker ever in the history of association football.
Too bad, his injuries did not let him show more of his rare talents but the little i saw of him in 1996-1998. . . .There's no striker better.



P:S Name your top 3 players of all time

Maradona
Garincha
George Best
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by chic2pimp(m): 6:32pm On Mar 14, 2010
~Sauron~:


All the Brazilians i have spoken to have told me Garincha was a better player than Pele.
I'm actually astounded cuz Most Brazilians see Pele as the greatest ever

~Sauron~:


I also agree Ronaldo is the greatest striker ever in the history of association football.
Too bad, his injuries did not let him show more of his rare talents but the little i saw of him in 1996-1998. . . .There's no striker better

But Many peeps would laugh in your face point blank if you told em' Ronaldo is the greatest striker.
Especially  those that saw the likes of Puskas,Muller e.t.c play.


~Sauron~:



Maradona
Garincha
George Best
This is exactly why I say opinions differ.
I for example would name this following players in no particular order as the top 4 players of all time
Pele,Maradona,Beckanbeur and Cruyff
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by chic2pimp(m): 6:41pm On Mar 14, 2010
~Sauron~:

Maradona is streets ahead of Pele. . . .Forget his off-the-pitch shenanigans. . . .
He was the heart n soul of the Argentine team that won the 86 world cup. . . .Something Pele never did.
Pele never played in Europe. . . . .Maradona lifted a second rated Napoli in Italy and won European titles with them
What else do you need?
Well, I don't believe he was streets ahead of Pele(who was ahead of his time when he played)
I also think you'll find the reason he did not play in europe was cuz of the brazilian authorities.
Not forgetting when Pele's Santos came up against European Heavyweights like Benfica and Milan he was the star player on the pitch.

I'LL ALWAYS STAND BY THIS

chic2pimp:

Tbh, Me thinks it is Interchangable either Pele or Maradona you can't go wrong.

Most peeps that saw pele play say he was the greatest likewise with Maradona.
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by Sauron1: 6:58pm On Mar 14, 2010
chic2pimp:

I'm actually astounded cuz Most Brazilians see Pele as the greatest ever

U musta been talking to the wrong Brazilians.


But Many peeps would laugh in your face point blank if you told em' Ronaldo is the greatest striker.
Especially  those that saw the likes of Puskas,Muller e.t.c play.

I dunno any striker as powerful as Luiz Ronaldo in the years between 1997 and 1999.
He was Cristiano + Messi + Rooney all rolled in one human.


This is exactly why I say opinions differ.
I for example would name this following players in no particular order as the top 4 players of all time
Pele,Maradona,Beckanbeur and Cruyff

Remove Pele and Cryuff/Beckenbauer from that list, abeg.
We are talking about WORLD'S GREATEST not European's greatest.

When you are less busy. . . .Read this PIECE

chic2pimp:

Well, I don't believe he was streets ahead of Pele(who was ahead of his time when he played)
I also think you'll find the reason he did not play in europe was cuz of the brazilian authorities.
Not forgetting when Pele's Santos came up against European Heavyweights like Benfica and Milan he was the star player on the pitch.

Only two players have won the world cup single-handedly. . . . .Garrincha(1962) and Maradona(1986).
Pele is a great player(without a doubt) but to compare him to Maradona is pushing your luck too far as far as vision, passing and fooball skills are concerned.

For me I rate Diego ahead of Pele for only one thing. No other player that small and mostly one footed was as dominant and as unstoppable as he was on a football pitch.
Maradona had the ability to make players play miles beyond their capabilities, on top of being a supreme performer on the regular himself whilst possessing complete mastery of the ball no other player has ever had an the type of genius that at times could only be seen to be believed.
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by chic2pimp(m): 7:38pm On Mar 14, 2010
~Sauron~:

U musta been talking to the wrong Brazilians.
I beg to differ. . . I think you musta been the one talking to the wrong Brazilians grin
Not that I don't rate Garrincha. I'll have him in my Top 5 players of all time and I also rate him as the greatest dribbler of the ball.

~Sauron~:

I dunno any striker as powerful as Luiz Ronaldo in the years between 1997 and 1999.
Neither Do I. However neither of us watched footy in the 50's and 60's.

~Sauron~:


Remove Pele and Beckenbauer from that list, abeg.
We are talking about WORLD'S GREATEST not European's greatest.

Remove wetin? Abegii jor those two easily made my list.
Those who saw Der Kasier play can't speak highly enough of him.

P:S I sure would read that piece.
Also didn't know you rated Garrincha this highly. He is easily the most underrated player in history
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by Sauron1: 8:25pm On Mar 14, 2010
chic2pimp:

I beg to differ. . . I think you musta been the one talking to the wrong Brazilians grin

Stop fibbing.


Neither Do I. However neither of us watched footy in the 50's and 60's.

I saw some of those on tapes and i know Garrincha won the 62 WC single-handedly for Brazil.
Pele never did that. He played with better players throughout his stay in Santos.


Remove wetin? Abegii jor those two easily made my list.
Those who saw Der Kasier play can't speak highly enough of him.

Beckenbauer and Cryuff are in the same league as Mario Kempes, Eusebio and Alfredo Di Stefano.
All of em are GREAT players but not in the same echelon as Maradona.

For me both Pele and Maradona are total geniuses but Maradona was superhuman.
If he hadn't been a drug addict with off-pitch issues, he'd probably have won more than 1 world cup.

There is no doubt Pele was flawless technically.
The same could be said in fairness for the likes of Best, Cruyff and Di Stefano who were all as two footed.

However, I just feel Diego took flair of technique to a whole new level that surpassed human understanding.
He was without doubt the greatest entertainer the game has seen.
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by SeanLewis(m): 1:03pm On Mar 17, 2010
Maradona is d best when we come to d aspect of honors
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by abrahym(m): 6:30pm On Mar 19, 2010
Pele
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by abrahym(m): 6:32pm On Mar 19, 2010
Pele
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by creampy(f): 11:58am On Mar 21, 2010
both
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by bouymoyo(m): 7:39am On May 21, 2010
it's Maradona all the time .it's not easy a player singlehandedly win italian leage with 2 club Samdoria & Napoli. Also plays for better clubs in Europe.
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by femmy2010(m): 10:35am On Jun 29, 2010
The only thing that can end the debate is MESSI
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by bisiaet: 10:40am On Jun 29, 2010
until pele or any footballer for that matter can single handedly win the world

cup like Maradona did in 86, he (maradona) remains the best player ever.

Single Handedly win World Cup? Pls I dont get you right.

Pls dont take it personal I need a better clue of how Maradona or somneone could single handedly win a world cup.
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by femmy2010(m): 10:48am On Jun 29, 2010
No one can ever single handedly win a half of a match .
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by sayso(m): 10:53am On Jun 29, 2010
he simply used left hand to lift the world , ooohhh hand of ,,,,, they said.
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by babaogun(m): 10:54am On Jun 29, 2010
blkmum700:

Following Diego Maradona’s controversial comments about Pele yesterday, Carlo Garganese asks the question: Who was the greatest?

I will go for Pele he has more record than Maradona and he is also a cheat he cant play football without cocaine. Lets hear your comment here.


I don't support the use of cocaine, but Cocaine only makes it worse to play football. Maradona could have been a far better player had he not gotten addicted to cocaine when he was in Barcelona!!!
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by babaogun(m): 11:00am On Jun 29, 2010
Please see attachments!!! This is the closest i can get to singlehandedly winning a World Cup.

Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by baslone: 11:16am On Jun 29, 2010
A player who immediately rises up after cruel and career ending tackles
and act like he was just hit by a feather.

If Ben Johnson couldn't be the best, then why Maradona!

Left to me, most of the stunts he pulled were under the influence!!!

Players like Maicon, Alves, Tevez, Drogba, Lucio will be better players
than they are right now if they decide to go this same route!
Re: Pele Vs Maradona: Who Is Better? by bisiaet: 11:16am On Jun 29, 2010
So the attached picture is what you mean by Maradona single handedly won a World Cup this is interesting.

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