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The fight of the strongest. Stories of famous confrontation between sports stars

On December 5, the long-awaited premiere of the biographical drama War of Currents will take place, which waited in the wings for a long time until producers Timur Bekmambetov and Martin Scorsese got down to business. The film will talk about the confrontation between the great inventors - Thomas Edison and George Westinghouse, who were joined by Nikola Tesla. Great minds are fighting over whose electricity system will give light to the entire country for the first time.

Sports are always about the spirit of competition. In order to get a victory, competitors are ready to literally bite into each other and pull it out with their teeth. On the eve of the film premiere, we decided to recall the most striking confrontations in the history of sports that went beyond simple competitions.

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo

Perhaps the most famous confrontation in modern football. The rivalry between the Argentine and the Portuguese has lasted for many years and formed the basis of the plot of a documentary film and even a book.

The fight of the strongest. Stories of famous confrontation between sports stars

Photo: Laurence Griffiths / Getty Images

The tense relationship began in 2008, when Ronaldo first won the Ballon d'Or, significantly ahead of Messi in points. From that moment to 2018, it was they who shared the award for the best footballer in the world. In 2013, having again overtaken Lionel, Cristiano burst into tears at the award ceremony - this victory was given to him with such difficulty. Last year, Croatian Luka Modric took the title of the best player, which for some time slowed down the ardor of his rivals.

More recently, the struggle between the two football legends reached a new level. Messi decided to follow Ronaldo's example and created his own clothing brand. Fans of the Portuguese immediately accused him of imitation and noticed that the new collection of Lionel looks and costs much more modest than many CR7 items. This is the whole Messi. While Cristiano attracts the public's attention in every possible way, the quiet and family-like Argentinian prefers to spend time with his family and not be scattered with unnecessary fights.

The fight of the strongest. Stories of famous confrontation between sports stars

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The fight of the strongest. Stories of famous confrontation between sports stars

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I bet you didn't see their faces happier, even when they were winning?

It's worth noting that rivals speak of each other quite positively and their aggressive attitude does not go beyond the field. For example, at the UEFA awards ceremony in the summer, Ronaldo said:

The fight of the strongest. Stories of famous confrontation between sports stars

Photo: Philipp Schmidli / Getty Images

Mohammed Ali and Joe Fraiser

Another well-known rivalry in the history of not only boxing, but the whole big sport.

Mohammed Ali was an invincible fighter, until in one of the fights he faced Joe Fraser and his trademark hook - wrap the body and then put all the power into a side kick with the left. This famous fight took place on March 8, 1971.

The fight of the strongest. Stories of famous confrontation between sports stars

Photo: Keystone / Getty Images

Fraser officially received the world title back on February 16, 1967, when he beat Jimmy Ellias ahead of schedule. Then he twice knocked down the technical Ellias, forcing him to refuse to continue the fight after the fourth round. However, this victory did not bring Joe satisfaction. Everyone knew that Jimmy Ellias was, in fact, a paper champion, who became such after the withdrawal of Muhammad Ali's boxing license due to the fact that he refused to serve in the American army.

The fight of the strongest. Stories of famous confrontation between sports stars

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Joe Fraser wanted a confident victory over the real champion and even made him return to boxing with President Richard Nixon himself. Ali was not particularly happy about this. He threw a lot of offensive remarks at his opponent, until one of them hit Fraser to the quick. Then the angry Mohammed Ali called his opponent Uncle Tom.

Uncle Tom is an insulting and shameful nickname for African Americans who shied away from fighting for their rights.

Of course, these words were unfair and hurt Joe so much that he could not forgive Ali until of death. He took revenge on him in the 15th round of their first meeting, sending Muhammad to the floor with a signature blow. And then he tried again, but after he gave his champion title to George Foreman. The second fight ended with Ali's victory.

The last duel of the great rivals took place on October 1, 1975. They will remember this day forever. The fierce struggle ended with Fraser's right eye swollen so much that the coach simply did not release him for the 15th round. But his opponent was also completely exhausted.

After the fight, Muhammad Ali apologized to Fraser's son for everything that he said to his father during this time. However, he said these words publicly only almost 30 years later. Fraser continued to bully Ali and his Parkinson's disease until his death from cancer in 2011. Muhammad Ali died five years after his opponent, defeating him in this fight.

Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova

It would seem that talking about an equal confrontation between two tennis players is at least silly. Serena Williams has been defeating the Russian woman for 15 years. However, the confidence of Sharapova and couplesand the defeat early in their battle caused Williams a lot of discomfort and a big blow to self-esteem.

The fight of the strongest. Stories of famous confrontation between sports stars

Photo: Mike Hewitt / Getty Images

Their first meeting took place back in the spring of 2004. Then the six-time champion Shlemov, after a long pause, defeated 16-year-old Sharapova. Six months later, Maria returned hers and won a famous victory. And then again. After this moment, the smiles became strained, and beating Maria more than once, Serena stopped seeing her off the court with applause. After a series of offensive defeats, Sharapova even hired a consultant who, according to rumors, was supposed to analyze all her matches with Serena and identify the main mistakes. But this did not work either.

Soon tennis players' quarrels became public. The subject of one of these was tennis player Grigor Dimitrov, whom Sharapova allegedly stole from Williams. She didn't go into her pocket for a word and called him a guy with a black heart.

The fight of the strongest. Stories of famous confrontation between sports stars

Photo: Quinn Rooney / Getty Images

In an interview, the former press officer of the Russian Tennis Federation Sofia Tartakova shared:

Now the girls' ardor has not died out. It remains only to observe how this confrontation ends.

Conor McGregor and Khabib Nurmagomedov

The history of the conflict of famous MMA fighters began six months before their loud fight. Last year turned out to be really hot for the rivals - serious passions flared up.

The fight of the strongest. Stories of famous confrontation between sports stars

Photo: instagram.com/khabib_nurmagomedov

It is already difficult to find out why the positive attitude towards the opponent was replaced by sharp statements on the part of Khabib, but the fact remains. In the spring of 2018, the fighter decided to be the first to make a verbal attack. He did not take into account that his friend and sparring partner Artyom Lobov could stand up for Conor. Calling Khabib a puss, Lobov pissed him off, which led to a skirmish at the first personal meeting.
McGregor could not leave this situation unnoticed and the next day he attacked the bus in which Nurmagomedov was traveling. He smashed a window, the fragments of which wounded other soldiers. The Irishman was sentenced to five days of community service, but this act greatly affected his reputation.

The fight was not canceled, but the conflict did not subside even without weighing. McGregor almost started a fight, hitting Nurmagomedov on the arm and trying to kick him.

Khabib turned out to be the winner in a tense duel, which was not followed only by the lazy, while Conor soon announced that he was interested in revenge.

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Arnold Schwarzenegger and Louis Ferigno

Lou Ferigno first met his idol, Arnold Schwarzenegger, when he performed with him on the same stage, Mr. Olympia 1975 year. And although then the novice athlete lost to the king of bodybuilding and took second place, his dream to compete with the inimitable came true.

The fight of the strongest. Stories of famous confrontation between sports stars

Photo: Getty Images

The audience was confident of Arnold's victory, but when the next year history repeated itself, and Big Lou again became Schwarzenegger's rival, Arnie's title was in jeopardy. Ferinho's body and form were in no way inferior to the competitor. Nevertheless, this time Lou again stayed away from the honorable first place on the podium. It was about this confrontation that the documentary Pumping Iron was filmed.

The rivalry between the two athletes was quite friendly. In 1976, Lou Ferrigno was invited to star in the TV series The Incredible Hulk based on Marvel comics. They say that this happened with the filing of Arnold, who turned down the role, since he had already starred in Conan the Barbarian, but offered the producers the candidacy of Lou. Another version says that Schwarzenegger was not tall enough and simply did not pass the casting.

The fight of the strongest. Stories of famous confrontation between sports stars

Photo: Joe Scarnici / Yuichi Yamazaki / Getty Image

Now both athletes are in great shape and even maintain friendly relations.

The fight of the strongest. Stories of famous confrontation between sports stars

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Healthy sports competition is exactly what makes us follow our idols, sit for hours in stadiums and worry about our favorite team. However, it is important to understand that such rivalry should not turn into aggression, especially in the stands. After all, sport is, first of all, pleasure. And without unpleasant consequences. By the way, you can watch the struggle of the strongest not only at the stadium, but also in the cinema for the film War of the currents starting from December 5 .

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