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Cristiano Ronaldo ‘unlucky’ to have played in Messi’s era

Ivan Rakitic believes Lionel Messi is ‘the best player in history’ despite Cristiano Ronaldo tying the Barcelona star on five Ballon d’Or awards last week.

Ronaldo was unveiled as the 2017 Ballon d’Or winner ahead of Messi, clinching the award for a record-equalling fifth time at the glitzy ceremony in Paris. 

Messi and Ronaldo are now tied on five Ballon d’Ors each, having shared the last 10 awards between them since 2008.

Lionel Messi is the ‘best player in history’ according to his Barcelona team-mate Ivan Rakitic

But despite Ronaldo’s latest gong, Rakitic believes the Real Madrid star is ‘unlucky’ to have played in the shadow of his team-mate Messi. 

‘I have a lot of respect for Cristiano Ronaldo,’ Rakitic told Mundo Deportivo via FourFourTwo. 

‘But he has played with the best player in history, which is Lionel Messi. Those who come behind are unlucky enough to have coincided with him.’   

Messi scored Barcelona’s second as they beat 10-man Villarreal 2-0 on Sunday evening to maintain their five-point lead at the top of La Liga. 

The Portugal international applauded the Madrid supporters and put his thumbs up

Cristiano Ronaldo with his five Ballon d’Or awards before Real Madrid’s game on Saturday

Rakitic helped Barcelona to a 2-0 win over 10-man Villarreal on Sunday to stay top of La Liga

Rakitic helped Barcelona to a 2-0 win over 10-man Villarreal on Sunday to stay top of La Liga

The Argentine’s goal was his 14th in 15 league appearances this campaign and he sits comfortably top of La Liga’s scoring charts.

Ronaldo, in comparison, has struggled in front of goal in the league this season with just four strikes in 11 games following his brace in Real Madrid’s 5-0 win over Sevilla. 

The pair have won every Ballon d’Or award since 2008, when Ronaldo first received the honour as a Manchester United player.

Cristiano Ronaldo 'unlucky' to have played in Messi's era