FC Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi won his sixth Ballon d’Or on Monday night and now commented on beating his longstanding rival to the record.
Click through the gallery above to see some images of Messi’s victory.
Messi collected his sixth Golden Ball after winning the prestigious accolade in 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 and 201, while Ronaldo did not attend the ceremony.
The 32-year-old said he will enjoy the moment before focussing on future tasks.
“I am going to enjoy this with my family, because moments like this where you can do things like this don’t last for a long time,” he said upon receiving the award.
“From tomorrow, I will have to concentrate again on other objectives. I am already focused on the future.
“I feel great pride, it gives me a lot of strength to continue my work.”
Messi then also elaborated on beating Ronaldo this time around after missing out to him in 2016 and 2017, which allowed his rival to draw level 5-5 in their internal Ballon d’Or battle.
“When Cristiano Ronaldo won it is because he had achieved great seasons by winning the Champions League and being decisive. It was deserved, there was not much I could do,” he told France Football.
“Did I feel injustice? It's up to you to tell me if the Ballon d'Or is awarded to the best player or the one who enjoys the best season.
“It is also down to individual taste. Some prefer Cristiano, others myself or Neymar or (Kylian) Mbappe. People have the right to choose the one they like most.”
Do you think Messi deserved to lift this year’s Ballon d’Or? Have your say in the comments section below.