Lionel Messi reignites Cristiano Ronaldo feud with Ballon d’Or comments
Lionel Messi has thrown shade towards Cristiano Ronaldo ahead of next month’s Ballon d’Or ceremony.
Paris Saint-Germain forward Lionel Messi has reignited his Ballon d’Or rivalry with Cristiano Ronaldo by leaving him off a list of worthy contenders for this year’s award. Messi has named a handful of shortlisted stars who he would vote for but – somewhat unsurprisingly – snubbed the Manchester United superstar.
Ahead of the November ceremony, Messi is currently the favourite to pick up his seventh Ballon d’Or award.
Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski and Chelsea midfielder Jorginho closely follow as the other two frontrunners.
Ronaldo is behind Jorginho’s Blues team-mate N’Golo Kante as the fifth favourite, so adding a sixth Ballon d’Or to his collection is unlikely this year.
Since 2016, journalists from around the world have voted for the recipient of the prestigious award, but Messi has given insight into who he would’ve voted for if he could.
Messi recently explained who he would consider for this year’s award if he had a say, rather than journalists.
The Argentine suggested four names – even one of Real Madrid – but omitted Ronaldo in an interesting snub of his long-term Ballon d’Or rival.
He told L’Equipe: “Obviously, I have two players in my team that I would vote for, [Neymar] and Kylian [Mbappe].
“And then Robert Lewandowski, who has just had a great year, and Karim Benzema, who was excellent.”