Pele launches attack on 'one skill' Messi - 'You can't compare'

Cape Town - Brazilian legend Pele says Lionel Messi 'can't compare' to him as a player while blasting the Barcelona attacker for being one dimensional.

The 78-year-old, who holds the goal-scoring record with over 1200 goals in his career, criticised Messi for being one-footed and unable to head the ball.

Pele believes that these perceived weaknesses to the Argentine's game makes him the better player.

"How can you make a comparison between a guy who heads the ball well, shoots with the left, shoots with the right and another who only shoots with one leg, only has one skill and doesn't head the ball well?" he told Brazilian daily, Folha de Sao Paulo.

"How can you compare? To compare with Pele, it has to be someone who shoots well with the left, shoots well with the right, and scores headers."

The Brazil icon, who is widely regarded as the greatest player of all time, previously said that he believes compatriot Neymar is a better player than both Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.

He admitted though, that he couldn't defend the Paris Saint-Germain attacker over diving claims while saying the 26-year-old needed to make more of his talent.

"It's difficult to defend Neymar for all the things he does besides playing football," Pele added. "I spoke with him and reminded him of his ability.

"He was unlucky because Brazil did not win the World Cup and he was singled out.

"I've been with him in Europe twice. We talked and I explained: 'The God of football gave you the gift. What you do complicates it.'"