Ballon d’Or 2013: Cristiano Ronaldo the worthy winner, says Lionel Messi

Ballon d'Or 2013: "I’ve got no complaints or excuses, the best man won," says Lionel Messi after Cristiano Ronaldo triumphs

Martin Caparrotta
By Martin Caparrotta in Zurich
lionel messi
Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi Photo: The Sport Review

Lionel Messi had nothing but congratulations for Cristiano Ronaldo after watching his rival win the 2013 Ballon d’Or on Monday night and end his dominance of the award.

The Real Madrid star scooped the prestigious prize for the second time in his career ahead of the Barcelona forward and Franck Ribery, preventing Messi from notching up a fifth-straight triumph.

I’ve got no complaints or excuses, the best man won

Lionel Messi

“I would like to congratulate Cristiano for winning, he deserves it,” said Messi.

“I have nothing to say really. I think it was a good year for all three of us and that’s why we’re all here. I’ve got no complaints or excuses, the best man won”.

Asked whether he felt that some injury problems hampered his chances of winning the prize again, Messi continued: “I don’t know if it would have been different if I didn’t have the injury.

“I was out for quite a long time, that’s for sure. I wasn’t in my best form for the Champions League semi-finals and I fell injured almost as soon as the season started… but it’s all irrelevant. For merit, Cristiano deserved to win.

“It was quite a tough year – not just for the injury problems but also for the things which were said about me and my family. Let’s hope I can just focus on and enjoy my football in 2014.”

Meanwhile, Ribery insisted that he would rather win more trophies with Bayern Munich than scoop the award next year.

Ribery said: “What more could I have done other than to win absolutely everything with Bayern? Whether I finish second or third makes no difference. I’m no egoist and this title is not my aim – I’d rather win everything with Bayern all over again.”

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