You might want to double-check your calendar because it’s not April Fools’ Day.
Cristiano Ronaldo has indeed thrown his significant support behind Lionel Messi for this year’s coveted Ballon d'Or award, reserving praise for the player often considered his greatest rival.
This unexpected turn of events has taken the football world by storm, as Ronaldo, with his rich legacy and five Ballon d'Or titles, crosses traditional football rivalries to endorse the Argentine maestro.
His commendation stems from a wealth of experience in the highs and lows of the Ballon d'Or saga, having been both a victor and a contender over his illustrious career.
Speaking earnestly with Brazilian TNT Sports, Ronaldo didn’t shy away from expressing his convictions, declaring, "Without a doubt, the Ballon d'Or should go to Lionel Messi.
His World Cup performance was nothing short of extraordinary, bringing to mind the golden eras of football legends like Pelé and Maradona."
Messi, a staple in the realm of Ballon d'Or accolades with an impressive seven awards to his name, has once again captured the imagination of the football world with his World Cup heroics, prompting calls for yet another golden ball to add to his extensive collection.
Even Pep Guardiola, the mastermind manager of Manchester City and mentor to Messi’s chief competitor for the award, Erling Håland, has joined in singing Messi’s praises.
Last week, he captivated the media, stating, "In my eyes, there should be one Ballon d'Or reserved for Messi, and then a separate competition for all the others. That’s where Håland could truly shine."
Despite being in Håland’s corner, Guardiola openly acknowledged that Messi, even in a less stellar season, rivals the peak performances of any other player.
He summed up his thoughts by saying, "Both players are undoubtedly deserving of the honor. But if I had to choose subjectively, my heart says Håland, simply because of the incredible success he has brought to our team."
With bated breath, the world now awaits the grand reveal on Monday, October 30th, to discover who will lift the Ballon d'Or trophy high and etch their name even further into the annals of football history.