Guti: Messi more talented than Ronaldo

Real Madrid has struggled since Cristiano Ronaldo left for Juventus in a stunning €112 million transfer at the start of the season.

Lionel Messi has scored a La Liga-high 32 goals this season and 42 in all competitions.   -  Getty Images

Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi has more talent than Cristiano Ronaldo but the "self-made" Juventus talisman is more ambitious, according to Real Madrid great Guti.

Messi and Ronaldo's standing among the greats of football is often debated, with the pair winning five Ballons d'Or apiece and numerous club and individual awards.

Barca's Messi has scored a La Liga-high 32 goals this season and 42 in all competitions, while Ronaldo has netted 19 goals in his maiden Serie A campaign and 24 across all competitions for the Italian champion.

Asked to pick between Messi and Ronaldo, former Madrid midfielder Guti – who is now a coach at Turkish giant Besiktas – told Marca: "Both. It is true that I recently tweeted that I chose Messi, but I value highly what Cristiano has done. He is a great player.

"Messi has more talent, Cristiano is more of a goalscorer, more ambition, he is a self-made player. It is incredible that in the era of Messi, he has been able to win five Ballons d'Or. He has been massively important, as he showed at Real Madrid."

Madrid has struggled since Ronaldo left for Juve in a stunning €112 million transfer at the start of the season.

The Spanish club has already sacked two head coaches – Julen Lopetegui and Santiago Solari – as it languishes in third position, 13 points adrift of La Liga leader Barcelona.

Madrid's Champions League defence came to a shock end at the hands of Ajax in the last 16, having lost to Barca in the Copa del Rey semifinal.

"He has been an important factor, above all for his goalscoring productivity," Guti said of Madrid's all-time leading scorer Ronaldo. "Especially in big games. Real Madrid have missed Ronaldo."

Dreaming of Real Madrid job

Guti harbours strong ambitions of returning to Real Madrid to lead the La Liga giant as its head coach. He was linked with a move back to the Spanish capital before Julen Lopetegui was sacked and replaced by Santiago Solari in October.

Guti – who left Madrid's youth team to re-join Turkish powerhouses Besiktas as a coach in July last year – still dreams of coaching his boyhood club.

"For sure. I have always said it. [To be on] the bench of Real Madrid is the maximum, as it was as a player," the 42-year-old told Marca.

"To be there one day would be really significant. I know that I must achieve plenty to be there but it also took a great effort to be there as a player. I am not scared of that.

"The only thing I want is to have an opportunity to do things well and for my work to be known and to keep growing."

"For now, I am happy with the steps that I have taken," Guti said. "Now I have the final one, which for me is to be the head coach of a professional team. I am waiting for this, excited, with great enthusiasm and I hope it will happen this summer."

Amid Madrid's struggles this season, Guti was asked if he could have been named coach and the ex-midfielder replied: "It is obvious that I would have had more of a chance if I was still there but I do not like to look back. It is worthless.

"Now, I am happy to have made the decision to come here. It has been very good for me to know what it is like to be a coach in professional football and keep growing."

Zinedine Zidane was re-appointed last month after Solari was sacked, the Frenchman having left Madrid following a third consecutive Champions League title in 2017-18.

"It surprised me, but it is clear that Zidane has done things very well at Real Madrid and the team was in a delicate situation," Guti added. "The friendship between Florentino [Perez] and Zidane also helped. If it is for the good of Real Madrid, all of us Madridistas are happy with his return."