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The Hidden Message Behind the Iconic Messi vs Ronaldo Image

Updated: Oct 26, 2023

Messi vs Ronaldo


The world's greatest rivalry, on the world’s greatest stage. Messi vs Ronaldo, Argentinian Captain vs Portuguese Captain. After years of winning trophies and accolades, the final infinity stone, the FIFA World Cup trophy is yet to be won by either. At the ages of 35 and 37, is this the last opportunity to win it? Is this the last time we’ll see them in the same international tournament? We’re near the end of an era, however, these football legends are not averse to breaking the internet.

If you have been living under a rock over the last week, a viral image of Messi and Ronaldo playing chess upon a Louis Vuitton case [ABOVE] has taken over social media. The virality and popularity are due to the deeper meaning of the picture. We, at Anonymous, have decided to dissect the image for you and seek out hidden subliminal messages. So, let's make use of that A-level Media Studies Course and explore the deeper meaning.

Magnus Carlsen vs Hikaru Nakamura Chess Game

Let's take a dive into the positions on the chessboard. The positions laid out to reflects the positions held in the Magnus Carlsen vs Hikaru Nakamura in 2017. Here is what Carlsen reported to regarding the image [ABOVE]: “The original is from my game with Nakamura in Norway Chess 2017, a very tumultuous event for me. I ended up with minus one, and at several points during the tournament, I was at risk of dropping to number two or three or even four in the world. It was tough!”.

Due to the age of Messi and Ronaldo and the career expectancy of a footballer being rather short, could we infer that it is in fact the pair’s last chance to win the world cup? The world cup provides an opportunity for players to increase their value enabling young pretenders to propel themselves to the best in the world. Another player could usurp the veterans and become the best in the world. We’re looking at you, Harry Kane and Keifer Moore. To be the world’s best, you need to shine on the world stage and others do tumble.

The Rivalry/Style

The rivalry between Carlsen and Nakamura is very much comparable to that of Messi and Ronaldo. Carlsen and Nakamura had very different playing styles in the world of classical chess, whilst both being the world's best. Nakamura is deemed to be an aggressive tactical player, whereas Carlsen is a slow, defensive player. We can draw comparisons to Ronaldo and Messi. Although both are forward players, we can look into the difference in styles which provided conflicting opinions about who is the world's greatest in the sport of football. It has been said that Messi is the more naturally gifted player, whereas Ronaldo is the epitome of hard work, determination and fitness, a case study for the nature vs nurture debate.

The Result

The result of the Classical Chess game ended in a draw by the repeat. Messi and Ronaldo's careers and statistics have been very close, making it very difficult for many to choose one, or the other as what many people call the GOAT (Greatest of all time) a stalemate represents this.

To be the world’s best, you need to shine on the world stage. Are the pair so focused on each other and cementing their legacy as better than the other, that this will be their downfall in winning the world cup, a TEAM tournament? Therefore, without one being able to elevate above the other in winning the biggest prize in football, a stalemate is destiny.

World Cup Brief Case

How the world cup is a chess board in the world cup case. The

case was used to carry the 2018 Fifa World Cup onto the pitch during the final and we are expecting this to occur during the 2022 Fifa World Cup final.

Final Note,

Final note, many people get caught up in the Messi and Ronaldo debate. They are great to watch, let's not get caught up in the divide and enjoy the best of the best playing on the world stage. I’ll leave this quote from Rio Ferdinand about the pair for you.

“People try and make comparisons, who’s better etc, just enjoy them, we’re lucky to be in this time”.

Great picture though, thanks Louis Vuitton.

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