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Lionel Messi makes surprise statement about Cristiano Ronaldo amid Real Madrid struggles

Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi has conceded that he misses Cristiano Ronaldo after his exit from Real Madrid last summer to join Juventus.

Los Blancos have struggled without their former talisman, as they sit 12 points off the pace in the La Liga title race, while they crashed out of the Copa del Rey and Champions League earlier this month.

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Zinedine Zidane has since returned to plot their resurgence for next season, but Messi has conceded that he misses the competition of facing Ronaldo in Spain, while he unsurprisingly puts himself and the Portuguese superstar in the mix for being the best players in the world.

“I miss Cristiano in Spain,” Messi told Radio C5N, as reported by Sky Sports. “It was lovely having him here, even though it annoyed me seeing him win so many titles. It would be great if he was still here.

“I don’t want to forget anyone, but I think that Neymar, [Kylian] Mbappe, [Eden] Hazard, Luis Suarez and [Sergio] Aguero are the best,” Messi added, as per Goal.com.

“I didn’t mention Cristiano because I put him aside from the list with me.”

Despite the media-driven rivalry between the two, there is no doubt that there is a mutual respect there and as suggested by Messi in his comments above, the pair seemingly bring the best out of each other which is a great things for fans.

Both men have established incredible goalscoring records while winning countless trophies both domestically and in Europe over the past decade and beyond, and it’s a privilege for supporters to have witnessed that rivalry in Spain.

However, although they continue to battle for success in the Champions League and try to outdo each other even despite having passed the 30 years of age mark, Messi seemingly misses that domestic rivalry too with Real Madrid undoubtedly not the same side without Ronaldo.

Time will tell if the Argentine icon has another marquee name to deal with at the Bernabeu next season depending on what Madrid do in the summer market, but it’s actually quite nice to hear that he misses Ronaldo to show a lighter side of their rivalry.

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