How good would Scotland be with Cristiano MacRonaldo in the side?
It’s a hypothetical question but one more than a few fans will have been pondering this week.
On Tuesday Gordon Strachan’s men recorded another victory, beating Norway away in a friendly.
And on the same night Ronaldo was simply phenomenal in leading Portugal to the World Cup Finals.
The Real Madrid star hit a hat-track in a 3-2 play-off win over Sweden to outshine Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who scored both his team’s goals.
If it is a shame that Ibrahimovic will be missing from Rio next summer, there is huge consolation from the knowledge Ronaldo won’t.
By producing such quality in a hugely-pressurised occasion, the Portuguese made himself the new favourite to win the Ballon d’Or.
And personally, I feel that would be the best outcome.
It’s not an argument I extend lightly. I believe Lionel Messi to be the best footballer in the world, quite possibly the greatest of all time.
He is better than Ronaldo because he does things the other man can’t.
The Ballon d’Or isn’t awarded simply on ability, though. It is a recognition of which player has performed best over the year.
Judged on those criteria, Ronaldo is the outstanding candidate.
I have always felt an average of two goals every three games is the mark of a truly top-class striker.
But he has done better than that he has scored MORE goals than he has played games. Which is nothing short of incredible.
You can argue he plays for a club side that is dominant in their own domestic league. Fair enough but if that is the case then why aren’t all the other forwards from the top teams producing similar returns?
What makes Ronaldo unplayable?
He is a superb athlete with great pace and aerial ability. He displays genuine composure in pressure situations and is a lethal finisher with either foot.
At the age of 28, he has a strong mentality and years of top-class experience.
He is, in short the sort of footballer any manager would love to have.
Having played in the era of Kenny Dalglish, I do wonder how he would have fared for Scotland.
Kenny was a fantastic player but he took a lot of stick from those who thought he saved his best for Liverpool.
One line of the time suggested he was the only player ever to get 70 trial games for his country.
Certainly I think we’d have stuck him on the wing for a few years. We did that to Davie Cooper, who I am convinced would have been a sensational playmaker if he’d had a free role inside.
How much better would Coop have been had he been born in Holland or Spain?
That is a different question for a different time.