With Lionel Messi having done battle with Cristiano Ronaldo for many Ballons d'Or over the past decade, the Argentine has now revealed his favourite Golden Ball triumph.
With the two superstars are once again among the leading candidates to lift the 2019 version of the award, Messi has explained that his first triumph is his most memorable.
"It is a beautiful recognition and perhaps the most special was the first," he told OTRO, as cited by AS.
"It is something that comes from the collective. Without having achieved all the collective successes that we had to achieve, I wouldn't have been able to get these individual awards."
Messi also spoke about why his victory in 2010 will always stay in his memory.
"The image of the three nominees (Messi, Andres Iniesta and Xavi in 2010) for the Ballon d'Or, it was special for us because of the friendship we have," he added.
"Being so long in the same club, all three living practically the same during our whole careers and special for the club. For what it means, the truth is it was impressive."
Messi won the Ballon d'Or in 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2015, and could become the first player in history to lift the Golden Ball six times this year – Ronaldo has won it five times as well, and could achieve the same feat.
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