08:51 GMT20 February 2020
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    Earlier this month, Portuguese football star Cristiano Ronaldo encouraged Argentinian ace Lionel Messi to “accept the challenge” of leaving Barcelona and joining him in Italy.

    In an interview with Spanish newspaper Marca, Lionel Messi has dismissed his long-time rival Cristiano Ronaldo’s calls to join him in Serie A.

    “Accepting Ronaldo’s challenge to join Italian football? I don’t need any change. I’m at the best team in the world. My challenges are renewed year after year. I do not need to change teams or leagues to set new goals. I am at home and I do not need to change”.

    Ronaldo urged Messi to join him in Italy after he moved to Serie A champions Juventus from Spain’s Real Madrid in a €112 million deal.

    “Maybe [Messi] misses me. I’ve played in England, Spain, Italy, Portugal, and with the national team, while he’s always been in Spain. Maybe he needs me more. For me, life is a challenge and I like it… I would like him to come to Italy one day. He should do like me and accept the challenge. But if he's happy there then I respect that: he's a fantastic footballer, a great lad, but I'm not missing anything here. This is my new life and I'm happy”, he said.

    The two footballers have long been viewed as the world’s best players, each winning five Ballon D’or awards before Luka Modric broke their shared deadlock on the top prize this year. 

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    Tags:
    challenge, player, team, Ballon d'Or, footballer, football club, football, Real Madrid, Barcelona, Juventus, Luka Modric, Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Italy
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