Real Madrid superstar, Cristiano Ronaldo, insists he would not care if Lionel Messi pips him to the 2015 FIFA Ballon d’Or.
Messi and Ronaldo have won the last seven editions of the prestigious individual award between them, the Barcelona talisman claiming the trophy on four occasions and the Portugal international three times.
Ronaldo has emerged victorious in the last two years, but Messi is widely regarded as the favourite to win the award this time around after guiding Barca to the treble in 2014-15.
Nevertheless, Ronaldo has stressed that it would not upset him if he has to settle for second place.
“I don’t care if Messi wins the Ballon d’Or. I know that it is not in my hands whether I win this award or not. It all depends on others,” Ronaldo told Kicker.
“I have always remained the same over the past eight years of my career. I have always played at a very high level. Name me one other player in the history of the game who has done the same.
“It all depends on small details who wins individual awards and who wins the league or Champions League. I am happy and proud of my career so far. Some people think Messi is the best, others think it’s [Andres] Iniesta. I respect other people’s opinions.
“But I think I am the best. Everybody should ask himself why you would not want to be the best at what you do. I think this attitude is one of the reasons why I have improved so much throughout my career and why I have achieved so much.
“He who wins the Ballon d’Or deserves all the respect.”
The winner of the award will be announced at the FIFA Ballon d’Or gala at the Zurich Kongresshaus on January 11, 2016.