There is nothing factual about making excuses for every instance of Federer losing to opponents who have outplayed him several times even when they were young.
And now you're saying Fed competes the same way even when he's not 100%, which is a convenient way of saying he's so much better than everyone else he barely has to try.
You can say Nadal is in decline, but I don't see how that's relevant if he can still beat Federer in slams and win Roland Garros, both of which he did this year.
To repeat again, he was getting owned by a teenage clay courter on hardcourts. What does that say about all the hardcourt players of the time? Mugs. His limits were being unable to solve the challenges in playing Nadal even when he was at his best. Safin showed a level of play that was just as good as Federer back then but didn't seem to care much about tennis.
Weak,weak,weak field of one slam wonders, 35 year old Agassi, mugs showing up in slam finals to be destroyed, teenage Rafa still learning the game etc...
It's easier to look good against a weaker opponent yet prime Federer still got owned in the 2nd round at the 2004 Olympics by teenage Berdych. Olderer still chasing that elusive singles gold medal. lol
Get over yourselves, greatness is not just number of slams, it's how you won & against who. The merit of success isn't equal for everyone especially those dominating mugs during their best years.
Yes, Novak was young, and the fact that he could beat Federer at the AO 2008 in straights is an indication of his strong desire to succeed leading to improvement. There is nothing shameful about making a slam final at the USO and giving a good match to in form Federer.
Novak doesn't need me to look good, he's doing great fine winning 5 slams and 12 masters.