After winning his fifth Ballon d’Or on Thursday, Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo declared himself the “greatest player in history.”
Ronaldo won the award for the second year in a row, equaling Barcelona star Lionel Messi’s record, and he stated that no player is better than him.
“I’ve never seen someone better than me,” he told France Football (via Goal’s Robin Bairner). That’s something I’ve always believed. No footballer can match my abilities.
“There isn’t a more complete player than me. I can play with both feet, I’m quick, powerful, and have a good head, and I score goals and assist. There are some men who favor Messi or Neymar. But believe me when I say that no one is more complete than me.
“No one has ever won more individual trophies than I have. I’m not just talking about the Ballon d’Or. Doesn’t that make a statement?
“It’s not merely a product of the gym training I perform, as some people believe. It’s the result of a variety of factors. Legends such as Floyd Mayweather [Jr.] and LeBron James don’t reach their peak by accident. Many things happen at the same time. You need greater talent than the others to get to the top and stay there.”
Ronaldo had a fantastic 2017, winning both the Liga and the UEFA Champions League. Los Blancos were the first team to retain the trophy in its contemporary incarnation after defeating Juventus in the final.
Ronaldo scored twice in the final, demonstrating once again that he is a man for the big stage, and it was for these accomplishments that he was awarded the Ballon d’Or ahead of great adversary Messi.
According to football expert Juan G. Arango, the Portugal international’s aggressive, greedy, and conceited personality traits have helped him become the player he is today:
Despite his prominence as one of the best players in the world, Messi is regarded as a modest, humble athlete who, unlike Ronaldo, does not seek the attention.
Andy West, a Spanish football writer, believes Messi is clearly a superior player than Ronaldo:
If he wants to beat Messi to his sixth Ballon d’Or, the Real Madrid star may have his work cut out for him.
This season, the Argentinian has already scored 13 goals in 14 Liga games to lead Barcelona to the top of the league, while Ronaldo has only two goals in ten games, putting his club in fourth place, eight points behind Barcelona.