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Soccer News of Wednesday, 20 September 2023


UCL 23/24: Messi and Ronaldo sent brutal messages by former Chelsea player

Lionel Messi & Cristiano Ronaldo in action for their new clubs Lionel Messi & Cristiano Ronaldo in action for their new clubs

The UEFA Champions League is back for the 2023/24 season, and it will be without two of its biggest superstars, but the show must continue even though the two will be missed.

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have dominated football for almost two decades, but both men bowed out of Europe before the start of the new season.

Ronaldo moved to Saudi Arabia Pro League to join Al-Nassr after the World Cup following the termination of his Manchester United contract, while Messi ran down his PSG contract to join Inter Miami in the MLS.

It's the first season since 2003 that none of the two global stars won't be playing in the UEFA Champions League, with reigning Ballon d'Or winner Karim Benzema also out of Europe.

Europe misses Messi and Ronaldo

The first round of matches for matchday 1 of this season's Champions League were played yesterday. Former Chelsea and Manchester City star Terry Phelan, speaking ahead of the star via Sportskeeda, had a message for Messi and Ronaldo.

"Life goes on, doesn't it? Clubs go on," he said. "Obviously, Ronaldo's gone. He left Manchester United. He's won everything he could win in Europe. Messi's gone to David Beckham's Inter Miami. Life goes on and surely they will be missed."

Phelan added that European football still has stars who can make the competition enjoyable, including Kylian Mbappe, Erling Haaland and Vinicius Jr.

"There are upcoming stars, who can score goals. I think the world goes on and football definitely goes on," he said.

As noted by Marca, Messi and Ronaldo have 350 games, 277 goals and nine UCL trophies between them.