Juventus and Italy legend and one of the best goalkeepers to have ever played the game, Gianluigi Buffon said that Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal are the Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo of tennis.

While the Argentina and Barcelona legend Messi and Portugal’s Ronaldo, a former Manchester United and Real Madrid superstar, who is currently playing for Juventus, continue to dominate the world of football, Federer and Nadal continue to be two of the finest tennis players, having won 20 and 19 Grand Slams respectively.

Buffon, who has been a big fan of the tennis icons, said that the Swiss ace is “infinite class” while Nadal is about “perseverance” in addition to his “talent”.

“Federer is infinite class, while Nadal is perseverance, sweat and also talent, otherwise you cannot win all the Grand Slams he achieved,” Buffon was quoted as saying by sports magazine Sportsweek.

Buffon said that Nadal’s desire to improve himself has taken him far before adding that he thinks Messi is Federer and Nadal is Ronaldo.

“Nadal’s hard work and constant desire to improve himself allowed him to be on a par with the most talented tennis player in history. The comparison is obvious and makes me smile, as Leo Messi is Federer, while Cristiano Ronaldo is like Nadal,” added Buffon.

Buffon also went on to reveal that he finds inspiration from Alex Zanardi. The former F1 driver had to have his legs amputated after a 2001 crash.

“The top of the list is without doubt Alex Zanardi. Few would’ve got back on their feet, as it were, even without legs. He teaches us the importance of the mind, as that rules everything,” said Buffon.

“Even with the difficulties of the disability, having an active mind, creating objectives, that helps you to live life with great enthusiasm,” concluded Buffon.