Whilst the debate on whether Erling Haaland and Kylian Mbappe will usurp Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi will rage on, there’s not too much doubt that the aforementioned quartet are regarded as amongst the games best.
The latter pair have been at the very top for almost their entire careers, whilst the former two are rewriting the scripts at both of their clubs and look destined for greatness.
However, former England international, Emile Heskey, has sensationally claimed that neither Mbappe or Haaland are a patch on his former England strike partner, Michael Owen.
“Whenever everyone talks about stats and young players coming through at a certain age, I always go to Michael,” Heskey said to Kick Off, cited by talkSPORT.
“I start comparing them with him, and a lot of them don’t compare to him.
“For the stuff he did and the age he did it at, and his maturity at that age as well.
“But then again, you play from the age of 16 and you’re going to pick up injuries – and that was his downfall, the amount of football he was playing.”
Although there’s no doubting Owen’s talent as a youngster, it’s a bit of a stretch to suggest that he was better than the French World Cup winner and another player destined to rule the roost for years.
Time does dull things somewhat, granted, but Owen’s time at the very top was limited.
Both Mbappe and Haaland are set to dominate the landscape for at least the next decade, so perhaps when they hang up their boots would be a better time to assess just how well Owen’s figures stack up.