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Pele: You Cannot Compare Me With Maradona

Brazil legend, Pele says he is good friends with Diego Maradona , despite their constant war of words, but says he should not be compared with the Argentina icon.

Pele won three world cups in his playing time, his latest coming in 1970, while Maradona won the world cup in 1986.

Maradona published a book last year hitting out at the Brazilian for a criticism he made ahead of the 1986 competition.

“I can’t explain why Maradona is so concerned with that,” Pele told Goal in an exclusive interview. “Because I always say that he was one of the best in the world, and that’s true.

“Now, we can’t say that Maradona was a great header. He didn’t score goals with headers. And we cannot say Maradona shot very well with both feet, because he didn’t shoot with his right, only mainly with his left…

“So from time to time, when people make comparisons, I make jokes about that. For me he was a great player, just that you can’t compare Maradona with Pele.”

Nevertheless, Pele claims it is all in good humour and says he and Maradona are actually close, despite the constant quarrels over the years.

“We are friends,” he said. “We are always joking. I always say to him: ‘Maradona, you can be level with Pele when you have scored more than 1,000 goals.’

“And he says: ‘I can’t now, but it doesn’t matter!’”

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