If Lionel Messi's Career Ended Today, How Would He Rank Among All-Time Greats?

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It's a simple but tantalizing question, and no matter how you answer, an argument is sure to follow.

Imagine Lionel Messi's career ended today. How would the magical Argentine rank among football's all-time greats?

On the one hand, Messi has won the Ballon d'Or—awarded yearly to the world's top player—an unprecedented four straight years. At the age of 25, he has already won it all in the club game with Barcelona, from domestic titles to European and international honors.

On the other hand, he's neither won a World Cup nor sustained his dominance for as long as legendary players like Pele or Diego Maradona.

So, again, how would you rank Messi among the game's all-time greats? Is he already up there with Pele, Maradona, Franz Beckenbauer and Johan Cruyff? Or does he need to do it all for a little longer?

Bleacher Report World Football Lead Writer Michael Cummings discusses that question in the video above. After you watch, make sure to add your thoughts to the comments below.

Follow @MikeCummings37.

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