'Messi was impotent, Cristiano is a better leader' - Hleb

The ex-Arsenal favourite feels that the Madrid star's exploits in the Champions League quarter-finals make him more inspirational than the Argentine

Former Barcelona attacker Alexander Hleb has said Cristiano Ronaldo is a better leader than Lionel Messi, but still feels the latter is the best player in the world.

Barca were dumped out of the Champions League on Tuesday after Roma staged a shock comeback in Italy, with Messi failing to make an impact as the Catalan side crashed out of Europe's top club competition.

Real Madrid, meanwhile, scraped past Juventus by the skin of their teeth, with Ronaldo's injury-time penalty enough to halt the Serie A champions' dramatic second-leg fightback at the Santiago Bernabeu.

And Hleb, when asked to give his analysis of the quarter-finals, had some strong opinions on the two biggest names in world football.

“Of course Messi is the best in the world,” the 36-year-old told Sport Express , “He is the leader of Barcelona.

“He has the mission to help the team in difficult times and he couldn't create even one goal. He was impotent.

“With all respect to Leo, Ronaldo is a better leader of his team than Messi.”

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Hleb on Messi & Ronaldo GFX

Hleb spent four years on the books at Barca after leaving Arsenal in 2008, but found playing time hard to come by and was sent out on loan three times to Stuttgart, Birmingham City and Wolfsburg respectively, before completing a move to Krylia Sovetov Samara in Russia.

Real Madrid drew Bayern Munich in the Champions League draw on Friday , with the winner of that semi-final clash set to take on either Liverpool or Roma in the final.

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