Gary Neville and Paul Scholes have come down on opposite sides when discussing which of Kylian Mbappe and Erling Haaland will become the best player in the world.
Haaland has made a fast start to life in the Premier League after joining Manchester City from Borussia Dortmund, leading the goalscoring charts in the competition. The Norwegian has 14 goals in all competitions this term, while Paris Saint-Germain star Mbappe has 10 to his name.
Both players have made the 2022 Ballon d'Or shortlist, with holder Lionel Messi missing the cut and five-time winner Cristiano Ronaldo no longer an automatic pick at club level. It looks like the Ronaldo v Messi battle will be replaced by Haaland v Mbappe, and it remains the subject of intense debate.
"I think there's more to [Mbappe's] game," Scholes said on Overlap Xtra when asked by Neville who he thought was more likely to become the world's best. "He's not just an out-and-out centre-forward, is he?
"He can go wide, he can dribble past people, he's quick, he can play one-twos. Haaland's f***ing amazing, don't get me wrong, but he's a goalscorer."
Neville opted for Haaland, though, and was surprised by the choice made by his fellow former England international. "I was looking at you, and I know the relationship you had with Ruud van Nistelrooy," Neville countered. "I think Haaland would get more goals off you than Mbappe." However, while Scholes agreed with that assessment, he pointed out that wasn't the question he was asked.
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Mbappe, who won the World Cup with France in 2018, has played up his own chances of winning his first Ballon d'Or this year with club teammate Messi out of the running. The former Monaco star was fourth in the voting in 2018, and has added two further top-10 finishes since.
"My top three? I would say [Karim] Benzema, myself, and [Sadio] Mané," Mbappe told L'Equipe in August. "I would say that this year is a success for Benzema. He's 34 years old, has just had the season of his life, has won another Champions League and is often decisive."
"If I were Karim, if I don't win this, I'll stop thinking about the Ballon d'Or forever. I want to win the Ballon d'Or very soon. Like many. Except that there are perhaps not many who dare to admit it. I'm still convinced that the hardest thing is to win the first."
Both Mbappe and Haaland made goalscoring starts to this season's Champions League as they each aim to win the competition for the first time. The Frenchman scored both of PSG's goals against Juventus before netting in a win at Maccabi Haifa, while Haaland's three goals include one against former club Dortmund.
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