Cristiano Ronaldo loses his cool for Al-Nassr as fans make Ballon d’Or joke
Fans couldn’t resist a joke at Cristiano Ronaldo’s expense after seeing the Portuguese icon lose his cool – just after great rival Lionel Messi collected his eighth Ballon d'Or.
The award has been virtually a two-way competition between Messi and Ronaldo over the last 15 years. On just two occasions since 2008 has a different player received the illustrious gong – Luka Modric in 2018 and Karim Benzema in 2022.
Ronaldo has won it on five occasions but having led Argentina to World Cup glory in Qatar late last year, Messi was virtually a dead-cert to claim it for an eighth time this week.
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“I couldn’t imagine having the career that I’ve had,” he said after being presented the award by David Beckham. “Everything that I’ve achieved. The fortune I’ve had playing for the best team in the world, the best team in history. It’s nice to win these individual trophies. To win the Copa America and then the World Cup, to get it done is amazing.”
With both players coming towards the ends of their incredible playing careers, as well as the fact they are no longer playing in top-tier leagues, 2023 could well be the last time either wins the Ballon d'Or.
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And eagle-eyed fans joked that was the reason Ronaldo lost his composure with the referee in explosive style during his last appearance for Al Nassr in the Saudi Pro League against Steven Gerrard’s Al-Ettifaq.
“Ronaldo got angry when Referee showed him eight fingers to count Messi’s eight Ballon d’Or,” quipped one fan. Another urged, on seeing the footage: “Someone please check on Ronaldo. Man is going through it.”
Despite the outburst, which came in the 12th minute and earned him a booking, Al-Nassr advanced to the quarter-finals of the King Cup of Champions, with ex-Liverpool man Sadio Mano scoring the only goal in extra-time.
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