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Ronaldo hits out at organizers as Messi extends record Ballon d’Or haul

Watch all the goals from Matchweek 13 of the 2021-22 Premier League season.

Cristiano Ronaldo is not happy with claims that all he wants in life is to win more Ballon d’Or’s than Lionel Messi.

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A claim made by the editor of France Football -- the publication who run the voting and dish out the prize which goes to the top male and female player on the planet -- stated that Ronaldo is focused on trying to win more awards than Messi.

Per the claim made by Pascal Ferre via the New York Times, it was stated that Ronaldo only has one goal and that’s to ‘retire with more Ballon d’Or trophies than Messi’ as Ferre said Ronaldo told him this personally.

Cristiano Ronaldo, 36, did not agree with those claims, and France Football is yet to respond to his version of events.

Messi won a record seventh Ballon d’Or on Monday in Paris, with Ronaldo finishing in 6th place in the voting. Ronaldo has five Ballon d’Or’s to his name.

What was his response?

Ronaldo took to Instagram to tell his side of the story.

“Today’s outcome explains the comments by Pascal Ferre last week, when he stated that I confided in him that my only ambition was to finish my career with more Ballons d’Or than Lionel Messi,” Ronaldo said. “Pascal Ferre lied and used my name to promote himself and to promote the publication that he works for. It’s unacceptable for the person responsible for handing out such a prestigious award to lie in this way and to show disrespect to someone who has always respected France Football and the Ballon d’Or. He lied again today to justify my absence from the ceremony due to an alleged quarantine that has no reason to exist.

“I always congratulate whoever wins, in tandem with the sportsmanship and fair play that have underpinned my career since the start and I do that because I’m never against anyone. I always win for myself and for the clubs that I represent. I win for myself and for those who love me. I don’t win against anyone. My biggest ambition in my career is to win trophies at club and international level, for the clubs that I play for and my national team. My biggest ambition in my career is to set a good example for everyone who is or wants to be a professional footballer. My biggest ambition in my career is to have my name written in gold in world football history.

“I’ll finish up by saying that my focus is already on Manchester United’s next game and everything that we can still achieve this season alongside my teammates and our fans. As for the rest, the rest is just that…"

The debate which will rumble on forever

For eternity Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo will be compared. It is just the way it is.

The fact Messi has seven Ballon d’Or awards and Ronald has five doesn’t really make a difference, does it?

Both players can be admired for all they’ve achieved in the game, dominating with very different styles of play for pretty much the exact same length of time over the last 15-20 years.

Do we think there is a healthy rivalry between Ronaldo and Messi? Of course there is. Both have said it on numerous occasions over the years and that spurs them on. But there is plenty of respect there too.

Whether or not Ronaldo said this about Messi, it doesn’t really make much difference.

The debate over who is/was better will rumble on forever and there is no right answer. No number of awards will help decide who you think is the GOAT.

Follow @JPW_NBCSports