05:25 GMT14 August 2020
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    The key football award ceremony, recognising the best player in the world this year, is held on 2 December. Argentinian star Lionel Messi, playing for Barcelona, was tipped as a possible winner as well as Dutch star Virgil van Dijk from Liverpool. However, Messi’s arch-rival Ronaldo, who transferred to Juventus in 2018, is also on the list.

    Portuguese star football manager Andre Villas-Boas, working for the French club Marseille, has supported his compatriot, Juventus forward Cristiano Ronaldo, in the competition for the prestigious Ballon d'Or award. Apart from sharing a homeland with him, he also praised the striker’s bold move from Real Madrid to the Italian club last year.

    “I am Portuguese so of course I support Ronaldo more. Cristiano took a risk by leaving the best team in the world, with more titles in the world. That kind of risk should be appreciated. Playing in Italy and scoring goals is difficult,” he said to the outlet Goal.com.

    However, the football specialist noted that the choice between Ronaldo, who has 5 FIFA’s awards, and his rival Lionel Messi, who has been singled out by Ballon d'Or five times, is difficult.

    “Both of them are exceptional, it's difficult to choose. It [Ballon d'Or] will become a competition between them. Having these two players in the same generation and watching them is absolutely incredible. They are extraterrestrials," Villas-Boas concluded.

    According to the outlet, Barcelona’s star Messi was tipped as a possible winner of the prestigious award, who will be named on 2 December, following his La Liga-winning campaign. For both him and Ronaldo, it would be a record-breaking sixth Ballon d'Or. However, another contender is said to be Liverpool star Virgil van Dijk from the Netherlands, whose club beat Barcelona in the Champions League semi-finals.


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    Virgil van Dijk, Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, football, Ballon d'Or, Netherlands, Argentina, Portugal
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