Michel Platini and Real Madrid have become embroiled in a war of words over Cristiano Ronaldo.
The UEFA president, who previously played for the French national side, and was widely regarded as the best European soccer player of the 1980s, recently came out and stated that Cristiano Ronaldo shouldn’t win the Ballon d’Or.
The 59-year-old declared that one of Germany’s World Cup-winning squad should be honored with the award, which is annually presented to the world’s best players of the past 12 months.
The Bundesliga report, via Bleacher Report, have quoted Platini as making these comments.
“There are lots of players who would deserve to win the award. But in my opinion, in a World Cup year the prize should go to a World Cup winner.”
On Friday, after learning of these remarks, Real Madrid decided to go on the offensive and they released a strongly worded statement, via BBC, condemning Platini’s comments. The Spanish soccer giants believe that as a prominent member of the European soccer body he should remain impartial and not try to influence the decision with his remarks.
“We are surprised at the repeated declarations regarding his personal preferences over the choice of the winner of the Ballon d’Or, particularly given that he is the head of European football’s principal body, where our understanding is that the strictest impartiality should prevail.
We believe that Cristiano Ronaldo has, without doubt, had his best ever professional year individually. It confirms his great moment of form and ensures that, more than ever, he is deserving of the Ballon d’Or.”
To put it mildly, Cristiano Ronaldo has had a simply stunning last 12 months. In 50 games for both club and country, the Portuguese forward has scored 51 goals. He has also picked up the Champions League, Copa Del Rey, and UEFA Super Cup for Real Madrid, plus he has been honored with the European Golden Shoe, Champions League top scorer and La Liga top scorer too.
Because of his exploits he is now widely regarded as the best soccer player in the world, and some believe that he has actually eclipsed Lionel Messi’s talents. Meanwhile Germany charged their way to the World Cup thanks to numerous fearless and ruthless displays, and the likes of Mario Gotze, Toni Kroos, Philipp Lahm, Thomas Muller, Manuel Neur, and Bastian Schweinsteiger are all in contention for the Ballon d’Or. The winner will be announced on 12 January, 2015.
[Image via SPIN]