Lionel Messi recently expressed his willingness to play in the same team as Cristiano Ronaldo in a supremely hypothetical world where that might be possible somehow. Now Ronaldo has followed that up by saying that competing against Messi motivates him. So what would happen if they actually did play in the same team? Exactly this.
Day 1: At the press conference to announce the historic partnership, Ronaldo and Messi shake hands as a pack of photographers snap away. Ronaldo squeezes hard and does that thing your uncle used to do when you were a little kid where he shakes Messi’s entire arm up and down like a wet noodle and laughs. Messi pretends to laugh along with him, but secretly wishes he was big.
Day 2: Both players leave early for training in the hopes of being the first to get there, but they both arrive at exactly the same time. They then go as hard as they possibly can for the entire session, wowing the other players and the coaches with a glimpse of the tremendous possibilities that having the two best players in the world in the same squad presents. They remain at the training ground long into the night as they each try to be the last one to leave, but end up agreeing to go at the same time because it’s so late. They then sit in their cars with the engine running, waiting for the other to pull out first for another hour.
Day 8: Messi and Ronaldo are both taken to a local hospital for exhaustion and dehydration when it is discovered that neither player has taken a meal or water break in a week.
Day 9: Ronaldo’s request for multiple IVs so he can recuperate faster than Messi is denied.
Day 11: The players are released from the hospital just as Nike puts out a hit on Messi and Adidas puts one out on Ronaldo in a desperate attempt to ensure neither company’s top pitchman is overshadowed by the other. They each disguise the murder plots as elaborate advertising campaigns, which fans and the media delight in. The hitmen are then told to take their time with their respective missions when the companies see that more exposure can be garnered by dragging out the drama as long as possible. Puma, meanwhile, considers burning down their factory for the insurance money since Mario Balotelli still hasn’t scored a goal yet.
Day 15: Ronaldo and Messi play their first match together. Though everyone expects them each to display as much skill and trickery with the ball as possible, they keep passing it to each other out of a desire to be seen as the ultimate team player. Finally, Ronaldo says “Fuck it” and scores the match’s only goal in the 90th minute. Messi, who set him up for the goal, gleefully jumps into his arms and Ronaldo hugs him while giving him an atomic wedgie at the same time.
Day 17: Growing tired of Ronaldo’s treatment of him, Messi trains alone. The press run stories of potential transfers and his fans rally around him, calling Ronaldo a heartless bully who should be sold off instead. Ronaldo’s fans then defend him, calling Messi a weak little Hobbit baby. What was once an intense sporting rivalry bitterly debated by entrenched opposition fandoms becomes the first media-fueled global civil war fought exclusively on the internet and led by sportswear companies.
Day 20: In a desperate attempt to make their massive investment work and calm rising tensions, The Club ask Ronaldo and Messi to bring their sons to training so they can be filmed happily playing together. The plan quickly goes south when Cristiano Jr. asks Leo Messi if he can be his new dad and Cristiano Sr. accuses his teammate of being an unfit parent for making his son wear off the rack clothing.
Day 22: Someone finally points out that every other player on the team aside from Ronaldo and Messi left weeks ago upon realizing that no one cared about them at all and that they could make a lot more money and cause controversies of their own as Designated Players in MLS.
Day 24: Cardboard cutouts are used to fill out the starting XI for Messi and Ronaldo’s second match together. No longer concerned with passing, Ronaldo scores four goals and Messi scores 5. They lose 15–9. Post-match headlines read: “Messi and Ronaldo not so great after all?”
Day 27: Skirmishes in the Messi-Ronaldo World War are now limited to LinkedIn and the comments of an Instagram photo of an unremarkable sandwich.
Day 28: Statistical analysis reveals that Cardboard Cutout №6 is actually the best player on the team.
Day 29: The world unites in support of Cardboard Cutout №6. Messi and Ronaldo are sold to third division clubs on different continents and their sons are adopted by Zlatan Ibrahimovic so he can move closer to forming Zlatan FC in the soon to be established nation of Zlatanistan.
Day 30: Cardboard Cutout №6 blows over during a match and is booked for diving. Many people point to Cardboard Cutout №7’s refusal to go down as a clear sign of his superiority as a footballer and an inanimate object. The debate begins again. The world continues to be a horrible place.