"I am the greatest! Wait, is that even possible? Ok, then I'm the greatest behind [Muhammad] Ali!"
Zlatan Ibrahimovic

“Is Messi the best ever? Yes, and I hate to say that for Cristiano Ronaldo, who is also an incredible player. But Messi is from another planet. A player who scores 90 goals in a year can’t be real. He is from the PlayStation. And Messi seems like he wants to play with the other players. He is faster, has more class, and scores when he wants to.”
Gennaro Gattuso

“I enjoy his fashion more than his football.”
Andre Ayew on David Beckham

"For the national team, he's just an average player. He's got this huge responsibility and his biggest concern is to change his hairstyle. Every match we have outside the country, he doesn't perform well. Everyone thinks he's supposed to be the answer to every problem we have in the national team, but Neymar isn’t ready for that much pressure, he can't handle it. He doesn't play in a foreign country, and European football is very different from what we play here in South America. He wants to get the ball, dribble, use his skills, but he needs to play for the team.”
Pele on Neymar

"I was in Frejus cooking a barbecue. My agent tried to reach me, but I was on vacation so I didn’t answer him. He sent me a message telling me it was urgent. So, I finally called him back. Then I hear Adriano Galliani welcoming me to the club without even asking me if I had agreed to join! But I was happy that I had no choice!”
Kevin Constant on his move to AC Milan

“He is a gentleman of the highest caliber, and to watch him on the pitch – pacing like a lion, as weightless as an astronaut – is pure therapy.”
Morrissey, the English musician, on Robbie Keane after watching the Irishman represent Los Angeles Galaxy against Tijuana

"How do you stop Messi? With a gun!"
Antonio Conte

"I regret not being mature earlier, because I think that I’d have evolved to a higher level. Maybe I'd be like Lionel Messi today. But I still have time, I can catch up."
Hatem Ben Arfa

“The president knows that we can sort my contract out in 30 seconds. As has always been the case, they will call me in and I’ll sign whatever they want me to.”
Esteban Cambiasso on whether he will remain at Inter Milan beyond his current deal, which expires at the end of 2013/14

"For me he's been player of the year – across this league and a lot more leagues. There are probably only one or two people [in Europe] who you could say have been better than him this season. How much better can he get? I'm not sure, but it's a scary thought if he does improve on how he's been performing this season."
Steven Gerrard on Luis Suarez

“In the last 15 months, I am the best manager in England. I won one Premier League, one FA Cup, one Charity Shield – there is not another manager that's won like me in the last 15 months. It’s the reality.”
Roberto Mancini

“They're two of the best players of all-time. But Ronaldo has been a bit unlucky because, in any other time, he'd be winning all the awards Messi has. But I think Messi's incredible. I think he's the best ever.”
Wayne Rooney