What ifs make a significant part of sporting imagination and folklore. What if Shaheen Afridi hadn't gotten injured in the T20 World Cup 2022 final against England? What if Ronaldo, the Brazilian, had not suffered severe fits while at the team hotel hours before the 1998 FIFA World Cup finals? Such scenarios make scope for endless possible conversations between sports fans and dwelling deep into this world of what ifs, Nike has made a fascinating advertisement.
In a now viral video, Nike has managed to give wings to the imagination of fans and has pitted Mbappe vs Ronaldinho or for that matter Ronaldo vs Cristiano Ronaldo. In the latest "The Football Verse" advertisement launched ahead of the FIFA World Cup 2022, a team of scientists can be seen in Geneva who have seemingly created a system to bring the past and the present footballers against each other at a pitch in a setting of a scientific laboratory.
This piece of advertisement seems to be inspired by Nike's own "The Cage" which was created 2 decades ago. While the two researchers seem to be debating who the better player between Kylian Mbappe or Ronaldinho, the younger expert advocates for the Frenchman and the elder of the two is backing the Brazilian, the new discovery kicks in which puts them against each other for the researchers to find out for themselves who is better.
Interestingly, since it is Ronaldinho from his prime, his expression in the video suggests that he has failed to recognise Mbappe, the star of the future. Similarly, as soon as someone prompts Ronaldo, he is pulled inside the pitch from the 2002 World Cup before his 1998 self also features in the video. Just then, one of the scientists wants Cristiano Ronaldo into the picture and he comes into the action.
Alex Morgan, Sam Kerr and Carli Lloyd are the female stars who feature in the video.
"An international team of scientists at a secret lab in Switzerland finally cracked the code. They’ve written the formula that will put an end to any discussion—the ultimate battle of all football generations...
"With the push of a button, they bring us legendary players from the past and present. A crazy experiment unfolds. Watch now to find out if the world of science can find a way to settle the score," the video description section of the video reads on YouTube.