Cristiano Ronaldo missed out on the Ballon d’Or earlier this week, watching on as his eternal rival Lionel Messi claimed his seventh gong, and may not be entirely content with the result.
The Manchester United star has commented on a social media post which criticised the decision to honour Messi with the prize, and the award itself.
The passionate plea, which was written in Portuguese, backed Ronaldo on Instagram, listing all of his achievements this calendar year and devaluing Messi’s contributions in the process.
It included the lines: “And who does the [Ballon d’Or] go to? To Messi, who only won the Copa del Rey for Barcelona, [and who] hasn’t scored a goal against Real Madrid since Cristiano left, disappeared in the big games of the season, won the Copa America that was supposed to be every 4 years and [yet is held] practically every year.
“He didn’t score in the final or in the semifinal, and he’s been having a weak season with PSG individually.”
Five-time Ballon d’Or winner Ronaldo ‘liked’ the post and commented with the word “factos” with thumbs up and wandering eyes emojis, appearing to show his support for the sentiments declared.
Some supporters were quick to point out how Ronaldo’s support contradicts a recent post where he claimed to have good sportsmanship, while other elements of the African football fanbase on social media have not reacted well to his latest antics.
Some supporters dismissed the initial claims as just being a photoshopped image, but it appears to have been legitimate.
“I really don’t want to believe it’s Ronaldo that commented on that post. So shameless. Tueh”, Nigerian fan @okolizmaine said.
@pakthehub posted: “Cristiano Ronaldo commenting on a post that slanders Messi has to be the most disgusting thing I have seen in football. You all ask for professionalism yet your GOAT can’t do that.”
As expected, Barcelona fans were against a man that has been a thorn in their path over the years.
@Joshua_Ubeku did not hold back when he said: ‘Too real to be photoshopped. How do you comment under a post that insulted Messi? God forbid!’
Another fan also struggled to justify Ronaldo’s latest antics. “Just seen what Ronaldo liked and commented oh my God he’s actually so pained it’s hilarious, this is a 36 year old professional”, @CFCMod_ said.
However, some fans felt it was all too reactionary and perhaps Ronaldo’s comment was being sensationalized and taken out of context.Barcelona fan @Chimamkpam_ put his sentiments aside and said: “Banter aside, Cristiano Ronaldo has a right to feel slighted.
“He’s made it known that he plays football for recognition & whatever our bias, he has done it,” he added. “So when he feels bad over his achievements being looked past, it’s understandable he cries foul. Let’s cut him some slack.”