“He doesn’t rate Penaldo”: Angel Di Maria snubbing Cristiano Ronaldo from his ideal XI sparks outrage

2022 FIFA World Cup winner Angel Di Maria has been making many statements since his World Cup win with Argentina a year ago. Recently, the Argentinian moved back to his youth club, SL Benfica, to play for the club where he spent his young years growing up and developing to become the beast of a player he is now.

Just months after the move back to Portugal, the Argentinian was asked to name the strongest lineup comprising players he has played with in his career, and his selections have left many fans enraged around the world. Many fans have come forward to share their opinion on Di Maria’s ideal starting 11.

Angel Di Maria angers fans by snubbing Cristiano Ronaldo

Just days after the 2022 FIFA World Cup-winning manager Lionel Scaloni controversy regarding his statements for current Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti, it seems like one of his World Cup-winning team’s vital players has started another controversy with Real Madrid’s former player Cristiano Ronaldo, and it has been in the headlines recently.

Speaking to TyCSports, the 35-year-old forward has provided the ideal starting XI of teammates he has had throughout his career, and his selections have shocked the football world.

The Argentinian chose a 4-3-3 formation for his starting XI, in which he started with his Argentina national team goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez, who was influential in the country’s World Cup win.

In the defensive backline, he kept Marcelo and Sergio Ramos as full-backs, with the Argentinian center-back pairing of Otamendi and Mascherano at the center. For the all-important DM role, he picked up Rui Costa, his teammate from Benefica in the old days.

For the other two attacking mids, he kept himself and Neymar Jr., who recently slammed the fans for calling him fat during his ACL recovery. But the main surprise came in the attack trio, where although he kept Argentinian captain Lionel Messi and France captain Kylian Mbappa on both wings since they were literally the best performers on the night of the 2022 FIFA World Cup final, he picked Zlatan Ibrahimovic as the no. 9 for his team, missing out on the 5-times Ballon d’Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo.

Even though there is nothing against Ibrahimovic, who himself is a great striker, CR7 could easily be slotted in as the No. 9 for the team, and that would make the team so much better as well. After all that he has achieved in his career, Cristiano Ronaldo at least deserves a starting spot in the ideal lineup for Di Maria, even though it’s just his personal opinion.

The absence of CR7 from the team has enraged many Ronaldo fans, and they have all taken to X to express their disbelief and opinions on Angel Di Maria’s ignorance towards CR7. Many have come out stating that the player does not rate Ronaldo, and that is funny, while others have just claimed the Argentinian forward will not be a Real Madrid legend anymore after such decisions.

Though Di Maria’s ideal starting 11 looks really good on paper, it wouldn’t have hurt to add Ronaldo’s name as a no. 9 for the team, as he can easily be listed as one of the greatest strikers in the last decade.

Are Angel Di Maria and Cristiano friends?

Angel Di Maria has been one of the very few who have gotten the chance to play with both the GOATS of this century—Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. As for the 2023 Ballon d’Or winner, they both are national teammates and have been playing together for the country for a while now. In addition to that, he played with Messi at PSG for a season before his move to Italian giants Juventus last season as a free agent.

via Marca

As for the 2024 Globe Soccer Awards winner, they had a small yet successful time together at Real Madrid between 2010 and 2014. During the four seasons they played together, the Galacticos won five major trophies: one Spanish Super Cup, two Spanish Cups, one La Liga title, and a Champions League. During those years, CR7 won two Ballon d’Ors, which was obviously possible with the help of the Argentinian. Both of them have played 166 matches together, having 28 joint goal participations, which is just exceptional.

From the above facts, it does seem that both players have been friends since their time together at Real Madrid, but maybe Di Maria’s recent move to Benfica has something to do with Ronaldo’s absence from the lineup. As we all know, CR7 played his youth days for Sporting CP, which is a direct rival club of Di Maria’s current club, Benfica. This line of thought does make sense, but it still doesn’t make Ronaldo’s exclusion right.

What do you guys think? Will the inclusion of CR7 make Di Maria’s ideal lineup terrifying, or will it still have some loopholes? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.


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