Ronaldo: I am the best footballer in history

Lawrence Kim
December 10, 2017

Cristiano Ronaldo was the dominant presence on the front of newspapers in both Portugal and Madrid as he collected a record-equalling fifth Ballon d'Or in Paris on Thursday night.

Real's all-time record scorer, who was named FIFA's The Best Men's Player in October, has now officially drawn level with Messi's Ballon d'Or tally.

It was a replica first two from 2016, which was the first year after FIFA ended its association with the Ballon d'Or and restarted its own Player of the Year award.Neymar will be hoping to take over the mantle of 32-year-old Ronaldo and Messi, 30, in the coming years after coming third for the second time, having finished fifth last year. His brace earned him another loud round of applause when he was substituted late.

Zidane said that the injured Raphael Varane and Gareth Bale would travel to the Middle East, not remain in Madrid to ensure they are fit for the La Liga Clasico at home to Barcelona on December 23. So let's see at the end of the day who is better and see who at the end of the year what collective awards we win and what the people voted'.

"We have been playing well for four or five games now", he said.

"I hope things have changed now, and we can keep going like this, scoring goals", Zidane said.

Speaking to France Football after his win, the Real Madrid striker reflected on his momentous victory. He was powerless, however, to stop Nacho from the resulting corner after Sevilla failed to clear the ball properly. Instead, the ball hit teammate Luis Muriel in the shoulder and bounced toward the goal, where Fernandez only had to finish it off. Rico anticipated the direction but Ronaldo's powerful shot bounced off his gloves and body before finding the net. That is in stark contrast to his league form, where he has scored just twice.

The goals were also Ronaldo's 26th and 27th in 18 games against Sevilla.

Madrid got the job done inside 42 first-half minutes, with Nacho, Achraf Hakimi and Toni Kroos also getting in on the goals to provisionally cut the gap on Barcelona to eight points.

Nearly a goal made in Los Merengues' youth academy saw Marcos Llorente volley Achraf's chipped cross just wide, before Rico managed to smother the right-back's one-on-one in the nick of time. Sevilla defender Gabriel Mercado apologized to the team's supporters for what he agreed was its worst outing of the season.

"It was very important to win today, before we travelled, to prepare for Wednesday's game", Zidane said.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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