Roger Federer: John McEnroe says it would be 'unbelievable' if 20-time Grand Slam champion could win again
Roger Federer hasn't played since Wimbledon after undergoing knee surgery and John McEnroe has spoken to Eurosport about what he thinks the 20-time Grand Slam champion has left. Stream the 2022 Australian Open live and on demand on discovery+. A subscription for discovery+ is now £29.99 for the first year for UK users, down from £59.99
'Most classy, beautiful player I've seen on a tennis court' - McEnroe 'misses' Federer
'Novak has a winning record against those two' - McEnroe on Djokovic, Federer, Nadal GOAT debate
“As far as the future, he’s 40 years old. He’s had numerous surgeries on his knee, there’s a lot of wear and tear, it would be unbelievable if he could come back and get close to the level that he was at.
“I thought the same thing five years ago when I was coaching [Milos] Raonic and Roger walked off after the Wimbledon semi-finals [in 2016] and was limping and didn’t play for six months. Then he won the Australian Open.
“He’s pulled off the improbable before but this would be the most amazing of all if he was to win another Wimbledon.
“Whatever makes him happy is what he deserves. If he wants to play we will be happy he is playing but I don’t want to see Roger at 80 per cent. We have seen that with [Andy] Murray and it’s not easy. You want to see the top guys play at their best.”
Federer’s absence from the game over the last few years has allowed Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal to draw level with him on 20 Grand Slam titles.
'Nadal could do what Federer did with amazing comeback' - McEnroe
Djokovic in particular has dominated at the majors and at 34 years old looks the most likely to finish his career atop the all-time Grand Slam standings, although his chances could be hit if he runs into more vaccination issues as he did at the Australian Open.
Seven-time Grand Slam champion McEnroe says it is tough to separate the trio and would like to see them stay tied.
Asked about the GOAT [Greatest Of All Time] battle, McEnroe said: “It depends on the day, who are you talking to, what surface. To me Rafa is the greatest clay court player, Novak is the greatest hard court, and I would call Roger the overall grass player. But then Novak has beaten him three times at Wimbledon.
“Novak also has a winning record against those two. He is slightly ahead but in a weird way I hope they all end up on the same number so we can have this discussion in 10 years and it will just be a matter of opinion and nobody would be wrong.”
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Stream the 2022 Australian Open live and on demand on discovery+. A subscription for discovery+ is now £29.99 for the first year for UK users, down from £59.99