The image of Carles Puyol powering in a header at the Santiago Bernabeu before wheeling away clutching his captain’s armband which he then held aloft for all Real Madrid supporters to see, is one of the most iconic of recent years for Barcelona fans.
Former captain, Puyol, has risked the wrath of anyone of a Los Blancos persuasion again, after he compared Lionel Messi to Michael Jordan but not without a little dig towards Real too.
“If you ask me who Michael Jordan is, I will say that he is the best basketball player in history,” he said to Goal.com.
“I think Messi will have the same status – the best footballer of all time. It is also talked about whether Michael Jordan is the best in history, and these are opinions, and sometimes it is difficult to be objective.
“It is difficult for a Real Madrid fan to recognise that Messi is the best.
“We have been lucky to have him but I really say, taking away the feeling of being a cule (Barca supporter), that the numbers are there, these have not been invented and they show that he is the best.”
Whilst the default setting for Madridistas will always be to bite back with stats backing up Cristiano Ronaldo’s claims to be in that conversation, Puyol doesn’t appear to be looking to gain any currency by including them in his assessment.
Frankly, such an observation is unlikely to be too wide of the mark.
It’s a shame that in a few years time, watching Messi on a football pitch will only come around each time there’s a charity game or similar.
Best to enjoy him while we still can.