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‘Cristiano Ronaldo stands out in football’ – Messi salutes long-time rival

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The Barcelona star compared his eternal rival ‘Ronaldo’ to some of sport’s biggest names and spoke of his standing in the world game.

Barcelona legend Lionel Messi has likened Cristiano Ronaldo to the biggest names in world sport, insisting the Portuguese icon is someone who stands out in the world of football.

Ronaldo

The question on who is best between Messi and Ronaldo has raged in recent times but the Argentine superstar himself admitted his respect for the Juventus attacker.

Messi revealed he sees Ronaldo alongside other sport superstars in their chosen craft – likening him to Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and LeBron James.

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He explained he managed to suppress “the fan inside” when he became a senior player at Camp Nou.

“When I started to be a professional, I managed to put aside my passion as a football supporter,” Messi said.

“Those who make me get up from the couch are my children. They are what move me the most today.”

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Messi has been linked with a transfer to the likes of Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain at the end of the season after handing in a transfer request to Barcelona’s hierarchy during the recent summer.

The attacker decided to stay at Camp Nou after much deliberation and hinted that he could still remain at the club next campaign.

“I’m sorry about everything. I always said it. Barcelona is my life. I’ve been here since I was 13 years old,” Messi said.

“Well, the truth is that today I’m fine, it’s true that I had a very bad time over the summer because of how the season ended.”

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Barcelona have struggled for consistency under Ronald Koeman, as they sit in fifth place in the La Liga standings, eight points behind Atletico but having played one extra game.

Their next league fixture comes against Eibar at home on December 29.

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